Parsons The New School for Design ( will honor New York dame Diane von Furstenberg, designer and President of CFDA, and Howard Socol, the chairman and CEO of Barneys New York, at its 60th Annual Benefit and Fashion Show on Monday, April 28, 2008 at the Grand Hyatt New York. The event, which raises funds for scholarships and academic programs at Parsons, is an annual celebration of visionaries who have significantly contributed to the field of fashion design, as well as graduating students of Parsons acclaimed fashion design program through a show of the top thesis collections.

“Diane von Furstenberg is a true American fashion icon and Howard Socol has led Barneys to enormous success,” said New School President Bob Kerrey. “We strive to prepare our students to be both designers and entrepreneurs, so it is fitting that we honor two people who embody this balance of creativity and business savvy.”

With the launch of the first fashion design program in America in 1906, Parsons remains a leading college of fashion and pillar of American design. The school offers a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree and Associate Degrees in Fashion Studies and Fashion Marketing, and is developing a Master of Fine Arts Program in Fashion Design and Society that was initiated through an endowed professorship by Parsons alumna Donna Karan. Other notable alumni of the program include the design legends Adrian, Claire McCardell and Norman Norell; industry leaders Tom Ford, Marc Jacobs, Isaac Mizrahi, Narciso Rodriguez and Anna Sui; and rising talents Chris Benz, Doo.Ri, Derek Lam, Proenza Schouler, Behnaz Sarafpour, Peter Som, Vena Cava, and Ashleigh Verrier.


Photo: Parsons The New School for Design building in NYC