Diane von Furstenberg
With a suitcase full of jersey dresses, Diane von Furstenberg entered the fashion world in 1970 . Four years later, she created the wrap dress, which came to symbolize power and independence for an entire generation of women. By 1976, she had sold over a million of the dresses and was featured on the cover of Newsweek. In 1997, after a hiatus from fashion, von Furstenberg re-launched the iconic dress that started it all, re-establishing her company as the global luxury lifestyle brand that it is today. She has expanded to a full collection of ready-to-wear and accessories. In 2005, von Furstenberg received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA) for her impact on fashion, and one year later was elected the CFDA’s president, an office she continues to hold. In this significant role, she has dedicated herself to fostering emerging talent and helping to establish the Design Piracy Prohibition Act, which protects designers from counterfeit reproductions of their work.
Von Furstenberg’s commitment to empowering women is expressed not only through fashion but also philanthropy and mentorship. In 2010, with the Diller-von Furstenberg Family Foundation, she established the DVF Awards to honour and provide grants to women who have displayed leadership, strength and courage in their commitment to their causes. In 2014, she published a memoir, ‘The Woman I Wanted to Be’. In 2015, she was named one of the TIME 100 Most Influential People.