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Speaker Biographies 2011

Joseph Altuzarra Simon Doonan Dr. Vicki Karaminas Patricia Mears Sophie Theallet
Glenda Bailey Eric Gaskins Nathalie Khan Caroline Rennolds Milbank Dr. Caroline Weber
Laura Brown Thelma Golden Thierry-Maxime Loriot Simona Segre Reinach Eric Wilson
Cherie Burns Daphne Guinness Dr. Peter McNeil Dr. Valerie Steele  

Joseph Altuzarra
was born and raised in Paris. He received a B.A. in Art and Art History from Swarthmore College in Philadelphia, and in New York worked for Marc Jacobs and then Proenza Schouler. After a stint in Paris under Riccardo Tisci at Givenchy, he returned to New York and began his own line with a small collection for Spring 2009.

Glenda Bailey is the award winning editor in chief of Harpers Bazaar. Since taking charge in 2001, she has reinvented the magazine. In January 2008, Bailey received an Order of the British Empire (O.B.E.) from Queen Elizabeth II.. She is the author of Harper's Bazaar: Greatest Hits.

Laura Brown has been Features/Special Projects Director at Harpers Bazaar since 2005. A judge on Bravos The Fashion Show, she appears regularly on Good Morning America and Entertainment Tonight. Before joining Harpers Bazaar, Laura was articles director at Details, and Senior Editor at W.

Cherie Burns
is author of the biography, Searching for Beauty: The Life of Millicent Roger, published by St. Martins Press in September of 2011. Burns's previous books are The Great Hurricane: 1938, published by Grove/Atlantic (2005) and Stepmotherhood: How to Survive Without Feeling Frustrated, Left Out or Wicked (Times Books). Her work has also appeared in The New York Times Magazine, People, Glamour, New York, Sports Illustrated, Constitution and other publications. She now lives primarily in Taos, New Mexico.

Simon Doonan is Creative Ambassador-at-Large for Barneys New York and a CFDA Award-winning window designer. His books include Wacky Chicks and Eccentric Glamour, a tongue-in-cheek style guide. A columnist for Slate.com, he has been a regular guest on America's Next Top Model and Full Frontal Fashion.

Eric Gaskins designs luxurious day and evening pieces worn by celebrities such as Salma Hayek and Natalie Portman. His designs emphasize craft, discipline, and perfect proportion. Under the name Fluff Chance, he writes the blog The Emperors Old Clothes.

Thelma Golden is director and chief curator of The Studio Museum in Harlem. She has organized many notable exhibitions, including Black Male at the Whitney Museum of American and Art, and Chris Ofili: Afro Muses 1995-2005.

Daphne Guinness is a true fashion icon. The current MFIT exhibition, Daphne Guinness, draws from her personal collection, which includes spectacular garments by designers such as Azzedine Alaia, Alexander McQueen, Karl Lagerfeld for Chanel Haute Couture, and Valentino.

Dr. Vicki Karaminas is associate professor of fashion studies and associate head of the School of Design, University of Technology, Sydney. She is co-editor of the book Fashion and Art.

Nathalie Khan teaches cultural and historical studies and fashion at Central Saint Martins and London College of Fashion.

Thierry-Maxime Loriot was organizing curator for the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts exhibition The Fashion World of Jean Paul Gaultier: From The Sidewalk to the Catwalk. He is also editor of the companion book to the exhibition.

Dr. Peter McNeil is professor of design history at the University of Technology, Sydney. He is editor or co-editor of eight works on fashion, including Shoes: A History from Sandals to Sneakers.

Patricia Mears is deputy director of The Museum at FIT. Her exhibitions for the Museum include Ralph Rucci: The Art of Weightlessness, Madame Grs: Sphinx of Fashion, and American Beauty: Aesthetics and Innovation in Fashion, for all of which she is author or co-author of companion books. Mears also coordinates finance, facilities, and personnel for the Museum. Previously, she was assistant curator of the costume and textile collection at the Brooklyn Museum of Art.

Caroline Rennolds Milbank has written about fashion in books that include Couture: The Great Designers and New York Fashion: The Evolution of American Style. She was co-curator of the 2004 MFIT exhibition The Couture Accessory and author of its companion book.

Simona Segre Reinach is a cultural anthropologist. She has written from a global perspective about fashion theory in publications such as The Fashion History Reader and Fashion Theory.

Dr. Valerie Steele is director and chief curator of The Museum at FIT. She has curated or co-curated more than 20 exhibitions, including the current MFIT exhibition Daphne Guinness, and with Daphne Guinness is author of its companion book.

Sophie Thallet designs clothes that blend femininity, ease, sensuality, and craftsmanship. She studied at the Studio Bercot in Paris and has worked for Jean-Paul Gaultier and Azzedine Alaa. After moving to New York, she launched her own label in 2007, winning the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund award in 2009.

Dr. Caroline Weber is an associate professor of French and comparative literature at Barnard College. She is author of the book Queen of Fashion: What Marie Antoinette Wore to the Revolution.

Eric Wilson is a fashion reporter for The New York Times. A journalism and fine arts graduate of New York University, he began his writing career at New York Newsday and Institutional Investor magazine. In 1997, he joined the staff of Women's Wear Daily, covering the ready-to-wear, fur, outerwear and designer sportswear markets. He also wrote the "Month In Fashion" news column for W magazine until joining the Times in January 2005.