About the Institute

Professor Susan Scafidi and Diane von Furstenberg

The Fashion Law Institute is the world’s first center dedicated to law and the business of fashion. A 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization created with the generous support and advice of the Council of Fashion Designers of America and its president, Diane von Furstenberg, the Institute offers training for the fashion lawyers, business professionals, and designers of the future; provides legal services for design students and professionals; and provides thought leadership and practical assistance on issues facing the fashion industry.

Professor Susan Scafidi, who pioneered the study of fashion law, founded the Institute and serves as its academic director. She created the first Fashion Law course and is internationally recognized for her expertise and for defining the field. In addition, the Institute is supported by an advisory board including distinguished members of the fashion industry and the bar.

The Fashion Law Institute is headquartered at Fordham Law School, just across the street from Lincoln Center in New York City, and works with universities and other organizations across the country and around the world.

Alexa Chung interviews Professor Scafidi at her Fordham Law School office:



Curriculum & Faculty

In 2006, Professor Scafidi created the first law school course in fashion law, officially launching a new field of law. It took a law school administration that would risk adding this newly imagined course to its curriculum — and a place where students who’d read her pioneering blog on law and fashion design championed the course, faculty members supported it (as one said, "We have sports law. In fact, we have two sections of sports law. Why can't we have fashion law?!"), and, to seal the deal, the then-dean’s spouse had spent years working at Saks Fifth Avenue.

Today, that original signature course has grown to seven fashion law-related courses. Each is the first of its kind, taught by experts in the field. These Fashion Law Institute courses are offered as part of the Fordham Law curriculum not only for J.D. students, but for students enrolled in the world's first Master's degree programs in Fashion Law: the LLM, for attorneys, and the MSL, which enables non-lawyers to gain invaluable legal knowledge and practical expertise.

In response to inquiries from attorneys, fashion industry professionals, and students from other law schools and design schools who wanted to study fashion law, the Fashion Law Institute also developed a unique Summer Intensive program, a.k.a. Fashion Law Bootcamp  — once again breaking new ground.


Fashion Modeling Law Professors Ali Grace Marquart (L) & Doreen Small


Fashion Law

Cosmetics Regulation

Fashion Ethics, Sustainability, & Development

Fashion Law and International Trade

Fashion Law and Finance

Fashion Law and Social Justice

Fashion Law Capstone

Fashion Law Drafting

Fashion Law Practicum

Fashion Licensing

Fashion Modeling Law

Fashion Retail Law


Professor Susan Scafidi
Founder & Academic Director
Fashion Law Institute
at Fordham Law School

Ewa Abrams
General Counsel

Peter Arnold
Executive Director
YMA Fashion Scholarship Fund

Paula Barnes
Legal Counsel

Claire Bing
Vice President of Regulatory and Quality

Ashley Brown
Associate Counsel at Royal Caribbean;
former General Counsel
One Management

Angela Byun
AB World

Jana Checa Chong
Senior Intellectual Property Counsel
Louis Vuitton North America, Inc.

Melissa Schoffer Farber
General Counsel

Grace Fu
General Counsel
KAYAK, OpenTable;
former Executive Vice President of Human Resources,
General Counsel & Secretary
Barneys New York

Jeffrey Hellman
Senior Vice President and Assistant General Counsel
PVH Corp.

Karyn D. Jefferson
Vice President, Litigation, Labor & Employment
Urban One, Inc

John Maltbie
Director of Civil Enforcement, Intellectual Property
Louis Vuitton North America, Inc.

Ali Grace Marquart
SVP, Business Development & Legal Affairs
Bravado at Universal Music Group;
former Deputy General Counsel and
Director, Business & Legal Affairs
Wilhelmina International, Ltd.

Vanessa Nadal
Attorney and Engineer;
former R&D Scientist
Innovative Skin Care Platform
Johnson & Johnson Consumer Products Worldwide

Don M. Obert
Customs, International Cargo & Regulatory Compliance Attorney and
Counselor at Law
The Obert Law Firm

Stanley G. Sherwood
Managing Partner
Sherwood Associates;
former International Tax Counsel,

Doreen Small
Davis Shapiro;
former Vice President and General Counsel,
Ford Models, Inc.

Jeff Trexler, Esq.
Attorney / Associate Director
Fashion Law Institute

Ashley Valdes
Principal Counsel
Warby Parker

Brien Wassner
Sidley Austin LLP

Kenya Wiley
Founder and Policy Counsel
Fashion Innovation Alliance

The Fashion Law Institute's award-winning logo was designed by the globally renowned design firm Pentagram and has been featured in leading design media, such as the Communication Arts Design Annual (a trademark of the year, 2010 edition), Print 31st Design Annual, Adweek, Just Creative, and Michael Bierut's How to.


Privacy policy

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