The Business of Fashion is pleased to announce the latest group of confirmed speakers at BoF VOICES 2023, uniting the movers, shakers and trailblazers of the global fashion, luxury and beauty industries with the thought leaders, entrepreneurs and inspiring people shaping the wider world.
Diane von Furstenberg, creator of the iconic wrap dress, Jonathan Anderson, creative director of Loewe and JW Anderson and Emmy Award winning creator Dan Levy will be among the industry icons, cultural disruptors and business moguls who will take to the VOICES stage.
Former President and COO of Mattel Inc, Richard Dickson, fresh off the global phenomenon of Barbie — this year’s highest grossing movie with more than $1.3 billion in global box office sales — will share the lessons he has learned on creating cultural moments as he begins his role as the newly appointed CEO of Gap Inc.
And, to explore the opportunities and risks with the rapid development of artificial intelligence, we will welcome an outstanding group of experts, designers and entrepreneurs including Brunello Cucinelli, executive chairman and creative director of the eponymous luxury brand, Aza Raskin, co-founder of the Center for Humane Technology and the Earth Species Project, and star interior designer Kelly Wearstler, who will share how she is using AI in her creative process.
They join a stellar lineup of previously announced speakers including Chanel’s global chief executive officer Leena Nair, Bottega Veneta creative director Matthieu Blazy, and president of global creative of Fast Retailing, John C. Jay.
BoF VOICES 2023 is an invitation-only event. To request an invitation to attend in person, please click here. More information about the BoF VOICES 2023 global livestream for BoF Professional members will be announced soon.
Other newly confirmed speakers include:
- Tim Brown – Co-Founder and Chief Innovation Officer, Allbirds
- Anca Marola – Chief Data Officer, LVMH Group
- Aza Raskin – Co-Founder and Program Advisor, Center for Humane Technology; Earth Species Project
- Sammy Basso – Biologist, Associazione Italiana Progeria Sammy Basso and The Progeria Research Foundation
- Annastasia Seebohm Giacomini – Chief Executive Officer, Brilliant Minds
- Schuyler Bailar – Educator, Author and Activist, Pinkmantaray
- Manu Chopra – Chief Executive Officer, Karya
- Owen Eastwood – Performance Coach, Marama North Consulting
- Dr. Wade Davis – Professor of Anthropology, University of British Columbia
- Vidhura Ralapanawe – Executive Vice President, Innovation and Sustainability, Epic Group
- Sammy Oteng – Community Manager, The Or Foundation
- Ayesha Barenblat – Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Remake
For the full list of confirmed speakers and detailed bios, please see below.
BoF VOICES 2023 is an invitation-only event. To request an invitation to attend in person, please click here.
More information about the BoF VOICES 2023 livestream for BoF Professional members will be announced soon.
BoF VOICES 2023 is made possible in part by our partners Snapchat and McKinsey & Company.
Diane von Furstenberg is a fashion designer, philanthropist, author and businesswoman. Launching her luxury fashion house DVF and designing her now-iconic wrap dress in the 1970s, von Furstenberg has long been a supporter of female leadership, establishing the DVF Awards to honour, and provide grants to, women pursuing their dreams as leaders. Von Furstenberg has received numerous awards herself, including the Chevalier de la Légion D’Honneur and the Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg Woman of Leadership Award. She was chair of the Council of Fashion Designers of America from 2006 to 2019 and continues to sit on its board, while also serving on the board of non-profit Vital Voices Global Partnership. She is the author of several books, including most recently, “Own It: The Secret to Life.”
Jonathan Anderson is the creative director of both Loewe and his eponymous label JW Anderson. Since launching his career in 2008, Anderson has created collections with brands ranging from Converse and Moncler to Topshop and Uniqlo. In 2016, Anderson founded the Loewe Foundation Craft Prize, the world’s first international award for contemporary craft and in 2017 he curated “Disobedient Bodies,” an exhibition at The Hepworth Wakefield museum in West Yorkshire, England. In 2019, Anderson was appointed to the board of trustees at London’s Victoria & Albert Museum. In 2020, the British Fashion Council, appointed him as an honoree of the Creativity Fashion Award, having named him as its first Designer of the Year for both menswear and womenswear in 2015.
Kelly Wearstler is an American interior designer and founder of her namesake design firm, Kelly Wearstler Interior Design. The 55-year-old designs high-end residential, commercial, retail and hospitality spaces. Her clients have included American musician Gwen Stefani, American actress Cameron Diaz and American film industry executive Stacey Snider. Wearstler is the author of five design books, and has been named to Architectural Digest’s 2021 Hall of Fame, the AD100 and a AD Spain Top International Designer.
Daniel Levy is an Emmy award-winning writer, producer, director and actor, best known for his work on the hit television show, “Schitt’s Creek,” which he co-created with his father. In 2022, his film and television production company, Not a Real Production Company, debuted its first series, “The Big Brunch,” on HBO Max. More recently, he wrote, produced and stars in “Good Grief,” a Netflix Original film, and plans to launch an adult animated comedy, “Standing By,” for Hulu, which he co-created with Ally Pankiw. In 2020, Levy re-launched a gender-fluid eyewear brand, DL Eyewear, which donates a portion of its profits to the Local Initiatives Support Corporation, a non-profit providing assistance to small businesses.
Richard Dickson is president and chief executive of Gap Inc. having been a member of the board of directors of the company, whose portfolio includes Gap, Old Navy, Athleta and Banana Republic, since 2022. Before his appointment as Gap’s CEO in August 2023, Dickson was president and chief operating officer of Mattel, where he oversaw the company’s innovation strategy, design and development, brand marketing and franchise management. While at Mattel, he was also executive producer of the box-office hit, “Barbie.” He serves on the board of the UCLA Mattel Children’s Hospital, and the board of advisers for the University of Maryland’s Robert H. Smith School of Business.
Brunello Cucinelli is executive chairman and creative director of his namesake luxury brand. He has received several honorary degrees, including from the University of Perugia, the University of Messina and the University of Rome. Cucinelli was also appointed by the Italian Republic Knight of Industry in 2010 and Knight of the Grand Cross of the Order of Merit in 2018. In 2021, Cucinelli became British GQ’s Designer of the Year and in 2023, he was the recipient of the Neiman Marcus Award for Distinguished Service in the Field of Fashion.
Tim Brown is chief innovation officer of Allbirds, the sustainability-focused footwear brand he co-founded in 2016 with Joey Zwillinger. As co chief executives, they led the start-up through global expansion from their base in California, taking the company public on Nasdaq in 2021. Brown stepped down from the co-chief executive role earlier this year as the brand continues its evolution from a direct-to-consumer pure play. Prior to Allbirds, Brown was a professional football player in his home country, New Zealand, helping his team to reach the 2010 World Cup. Over the course of these experiences, Brown has developed unique insights into teamwork, self-improvement and leading with a resilient mindset.
Anca Marola is group chief data officer of LVMH, responsible for the group’s data strategy across value chains. Over the past 15 years, Marola has focused on developing and sharing insights into the power of data science and digital innovation, particularly in the luxury industry. She is also a board member of the French Tech Corporate Community, a Franco-European grouping focused on technological transformation.
Aza Raskin is the Center for Humane Technology’s co-founder and programme adviser as well as co-founder and president of the Earth Species Project. He also co-hosts the podcast, Your Undivided Attention, is a co-chairing member of the World Economic Forum’s Global AI Counsel and helped found Mozilla Labs. Raskin was the subject of “The Social Dilemma,” a 2020 Emmy award-winning documentary about the impact of social media on our lives. The Berkeley, California-based mathematician and physicist was named Fast Company’s Master of Design, and was on Forbes and Inc. Magazine’s “30 Under 30″ lists.
Sammy Basso is a biologist, spokesperson for the Italian Progeria Association Sammy Basso APS and global ambassador for the Progeria Research Foundation, playing a pivotal role in raising awareness of Hutchinson-Gilford Progeria Syndrome, a rare, progressive genetic disorder that accelerates the ageing of children, which Basso was diagnosed with at the age of two. In recognition of his commitment to inclusivity and inclusion with the help of scientific research, he was awarded the Knighthood of the Order of Merit of the Italian Republic in 2019.
Annastasia Seebohm Giacomini is chief executive of the Brilliant Minds Foundation, a global platform for creative and influential individuals to share ideas and experiences, with participants ranging from former US president Barack Obama to activist and supermodel Naomi Campbell. Previously, Seebohm Giacomini was group CEO of Quintessentially, a luxury lifestyle management group. Her work in international business has been profiled in Forbes, Vanity Fair and Harvard Business Review, among other publications. In 2020, Seebohm was among British GQ’s 50 most influential people in the UK.
Schuyler Bailar is an educator, author and activist who made history as the first transgender athlete to compete in any sport on a National Collegiate Athletics Association (NCAA) Division 1 men’s team. Originally recruited to swim for the Harvard women’s team, Bailar made the difficult choice to transition while potentially giving up the prospect of being an NCAA Champion. Instead, he was presented with the Harvard Director’s Award and named LGBTQ Nation’s Instagram Advocate for 2020. In 2021, Bailar released his coming-of-age novel, “Obie Is Man Enough,” and in 2022, he established LaneChanger, a learning series that makes gender literacy education accessible to every team, school, and company.
Manu Chopra is co-founder and chief executive of Kayra, an AI collective dedicated to providing vulnerable rural communities with sources of supplementary incomes. Before graduating from Stanford University with a degree in computer science in 2017, Chopra co-founded CS+Social Good — the university’s first student group focused on technology and social impact. Chopra has since launched a range of projects, including Project Mahatma, which provides students with leadership mentorship and training as well as Project Janta, which targets extreme poverty in India.
Owen Eastwood is a performance coach and author. A former lawyer, Eastwood focuses on developing team and organisational strength for a lengthy roster of clients ranging from investment bankers to ballet dancers to football stars to global consultants. He is also a non-executive director of Harlequins Rugby Club in London. His first book, “Belonging: The Ancient Code of Togetherness,” was published in 2021 and is an international best-seller.
Dr Wade Davis is a researcher, writer, photographer, filmmaker and lecturer, specialising in cultural anthropology — the study of the learned behaviour of groups of people in specific environments. Throughout his decades-long career, he studied local communities in the Amazon, Tibet, Polynesia and the Arctic. Davis served as explorer-in-residence for the National Geographic Society from 2000 to 2013, where he produced the award-winning documentary “Light at the Edge of the World.” Among his many professional accolades is his Member of the Order of Canada, awarded in 2016, and honorary citizenship of Colombia, given in 2018. Wade received degrees in anthropology and biology, as well as his PhD in ethnobotany, from Harvard University. He is currently Professor of Anthropology at the University of British Columbia.
Vidhura Ralapanawe is executive vice president for innovation and sustainability at global apparel manufacturer Epic Group in Sri Lanka. During his tenure at Epic, the company has committed to reaching a range of climate and sustainability targets while establishing a sustainable facility to design and manufacture low-impact products. Prior to Epic, he worked at manufacturer MAS Intimates, developing its sustainability road map. Ralapanawe is a board member of the Sustainable Apparel Coalition.
Sammy Oteng is the senior community engagement manager at The Or Foundation, a non-profit organisation set up to promote a circular textiles economy. From his base in Ghana, Oteng works with the local Kantamanto community to advocate for a more-just secondhand clothing ecosystem, while also overseeing The Or’s programme that provides local debt and crisis relief. Oteng has also been a participant in global platforms to voice support for policies that hold fashion supply chains accountable for end-of-life products. Prior to his work at The Or, Oteng trained and worked as a fashion designer, becoming a Gucci Design Fellowship finalist.
Ayesha Barenblat is a social entrepreneur and founder of Remake, a San Francisco-based non-profit dedicated to building sustainable supply chains and eradicating harmful labour and environmental practices in the fashion industry. Prior to Remake, Barenblat led brand engagement at Better Work, a World Bank and United Nations partnership focusing on safe and decent working conditions in garment factories, and ran the fashion vertical at Business for Social Responsibility, a sustainable-business network and consulting company.