Academy of Art University is proud to announce that Sarah Mower, Chief Critic for Vogue.com, will join the School of Fashion as the guest of honor for the Graduation Fashion Show on Saturday, May 6, 2017. Sarah Mower will receive the degree of Honorary Doctorate from Dr. Elisa Stephens, President of Academy of Art University, for her contributions to the fashion industry and fashion education, and for her support of emerging designers.
In 2009, Mower was appointed the British Fashion Council’s Ambassador for Emerging Talent. She co-chairs the BFC’s NEWGEN Committee, and serves as a trustee of the BFC’s Education Foundation where she campaigns to raise much-needed scholarships for students. She has overseen the development of a generation of designers including Christopher Kane, Erdem, Mary Katrantzou, JW Anderson, Roksanda, Simone Rocha, Nicholas Kirkwood, Michael Halpern, and many others since they were students.
When asked about this year’s guest of honor, Executive Director of the School of Fashion Simon Ungless said, “For Sarah, to be honest she is very vocal about cuts being made in education regarding art and design and she is really pushing new/young talent. That’s what made me interested in trying to get her to come. I’m interested in forming conversations and relationships that can have long term positive impact for our students as they prepare to move into their professional lives.”
Presently the Chief Critic for Vogue.com, Sarah Mower is an internationally acclaimed and renowned fashion journalist. She has documented and analyzed fashion movements through reviews for Style.com, and features for Vogue, British Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar, and British newspapers since her first job at The Guardian in 1987. Mower has authored six books: London Uprising: Fifty Designers, One City (Phaidon 2017), Chloé Attitudes (Rizzoli 2013), Stylist: The Interpreters of Fashion (Rizzoli 2009), Gucci by Gucci (Rizzoli 2008), 20 Years: Dolce & Gabbana (Rizzoli 2006), and Oscar de la Renta (Assouline 2000).
Mower’s involvement in fashion and art education includes a visiting professorship at Central Saint Martins, and the position as an honorary fellow of the Royal College of Art in London. Her role in raising the profile of the British fashion industry within the global community was recognized in 2011 when she received the distinguished honor of Member of the British Empire (MBE) by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II for services to the fashion industry. Sarah Mower is the curator of The Wardrobe Department, creating free programs for young designers, students and festival goers of all ages at Port Eliot Festival in Cornwall, England. The 2017 edition takes place July 27-30.
On Friday, May 5, 2017, Simon Ungless has invited this year’s guests to visit SHOP657, the Academy’s retail store, and tour the School of Fashion at 625 Polk Street. He will then moderate a discussion with Sarah Mower, and Sara Kozlowski, Director of Education and Professional Development for the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA). This hour-long discussion is mandatory for all senior level and graduating students as the focus will be on career preparedness and global opportunities specific to School of Fashion students to learn how to design sustainable careers in a rapidly changing fashion landscape.
As Director of Education and Professional Development for the CFDA, Sara Kozlowski applies two decades of experience within the fashion industry and education to the strategic management of the CFDA’s educational initiatives that includes creating new programs involving sustainability, technology, creativity, and innovation for early emerging design talent. Programs include the new Elaine Gold Launch Pad, CFDA + Lexus Fashion* Initiative, Eileen Fisher Social Innovator Award, CFDA+ Design Graduates and other fashion education based engagement opportunities for all phases of design.
Prior to joining the CFDA, Kozlowski was a full time design educator for eleven years holding academic leadership roles in New York, Shanghai, and San Francisco where she worked in the School of Fashion at Academy of Art University. Kozlowski holds a Masters of Business Administration in Design Strategy [dMBA] from California College of the Arts, and a BFA in Fashion Design from Parsons School of Design where she was awarded the Anna Sui and Byron Lars Gold Thimble Awards of distinction. Her experience working as a designer began at Anna Sui followed by the launch of the label CAKE that was represented by Steve Alan and sold worldwide at over 40 stores including Barneys New York, Intermix, Browns, and United Arrows during its six years of operation.