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Canada's Wolf Circus wins 2019 FIT Design Entrepreneur award

today Jun 10, 2019
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FIT’s 7th annual Design Entrepreneurs program came to an end last week when Fiona Morrison was selected to receive the top prize. 

Nora Gardner (L) and Fiona Morrison (R) with FIT president Dr. Joyce F. Brown. - FIT

Morrison took home the $100,000 grand prize for her Vancouver-based line of sustainable demi-fine jewelry, dubbed Wolf Circus, beating twelve other designer finalists who participated in the “mini MBA program." 
Likewise, Nora Gardner was equally awarded the Israel Goldgrub Award - a $50,000 prize – for her namesake brand focused on women’s suiting. 

The twelve finalists presented their business plans to a panel of industry executives including the likes of Tommy Hilfiger and Dee Ocleppo Hilfiger; Morris Goldfarb, CEO of G-III; Adrienne Lazarus, CEO of Bandier; Thomas Ott, Saks Off Fifth & Gilt chief merchant, and Henri Zirpolo, Rag & Bone senior designer. 
This was the first year where all finalists were women, signaling change for an industry where higher-level positions are typically dominated by men.
FIT’s Design Entrepreneurs’ Class of 2019 kicked off in January where some 24 up-and-coming designers were selected by fashion and business experts to participate in the program, which aims to help entrepreneurial emerging designers boost their existing businesses. 
The six-month “boot camp” includes a series of specialized workshops, learning intensives, mentorship opportunities from leading fashion industry professionals, and networking salons. 
Launched in 2012, FIT Design Entrepreneurs has helped over 80 companies, including David Hart, Haus Alkire and Abasi Rosborough, to name a few.

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