9th Annual Symposium

Announcement of 9th annual symposium, "Fashion. Law. Realness." Friday, April 12, 2019. Image of eyes with one eyebrow raised. Fashion Law Institute logo.

If you have not registered and are a member of the media (with credentials) planning to cover this event, please email us at events@fashionlawinstitute.com.

Join us for the highlight of the fashion law calendar: our 9th Annual Symposium on April 12th!

DATE: April 12, 2019
TIME: 9am-6pm
PLACE: Fordham Law School, 150 W. 62nd Street
NYS CLE: 6.5 hours total (4.5 professional practice,
transitional & non-transitional, 1.0 diversity, inclusion, and elimination of bias; and 1.0 ethics)


  • Kenneth Anand, YEEZY Apparel
  • Diana Bernal, Retail Consultant
  • Meryl Bernstein, Hogan Lovells
  • Claire Bing and Vanessa A. Nadal, Esq., Professors of Cosmetics Regulation, Fordham
  • Lissa Bourjolly, Centric Brands
  • Mary Kate Brennan, Dentons
  • Angela Byun, Condé Nast
  • Ron Coleman, Mandelbaum Barrett
  • Cristina Del Valle, Metropolitan Museum of Art
  • Deborah Farone, Farone Advisors
  • Sarah Feingold, First lawyer at Etsy and Vroom
  • Douriean Fletcher, Jewelry designer for Black Panther
  • Chris Giglio, HL Strategic Solutions
  • Robin Gruber, Chanel
  • Nick Hawkins, Under Armour
  • Chi Kim, Balenciaga
  • Cindy Levitt, Mad Engine; Licensing Industry Merchandisers' Association (LIMA)
  • Tony Liu and Lindsey Schuyler, Diet Prada
  • Krina Merchant, Province Brands
  • Adrienne T. Montes, Gabay & Bowler
  • Casey O’Connor and Dan Tasse, Stitch Fix
  • Aleksandra Petkovic, Shearman & Sterling
  • Nicole Piccirillo, Sam Edelman
  • Grace Sacro and Brittny-Jade Saunders, NYC Commission on Human Rights
  • Professor Susan Scafidi, Fashion Law Institute
  • David Stark, Artestar; Keith Haring Foundation
  • Professor Olivier Sylvain, Fordham School of Law
  • Jeff Trexler, Moda Legal
  • Sara Yood, Jewelers Vigilance Committee
  • Staci Zaretsky, Above the Law



Legal Realism: Designers' IP and the ethics of attorney advertising

Who are you wearing – and is it your client? Legal ethics rules on traditional attorney advertising can seem straightforward, but fashion lawyers in particular face the temptation to brand themselves as fashion mavens and post on social media about style, their sometime fashion clients, and other labels -- at times using trademarks, designs, storefront or studio backgrounds, and runway images. Sit front row as this panel goes beyond old ethics rules to contemporary legal marketing, offering not only an assessment of the law and the rules but also a broader look at how fashion lawyers can and should sell themselves.

Keeping It Real: Streetwear, street art, cannabis, and the law of breaking the rules

Streetwear, street art, even some street drugs – outsider art and culture in various forms are redefining the fashion mainstream. But what does it mean to be “street,” and is that moniker a simple descriptor, an insult, or an assertion of authenticity? Why is street style so compelling that it is influencing everyone from traditional European fashion houses to mass market retailers, and what is the effect of this widespread appropriation? How can a fashion-related enterprise with street roots maintain an authentic transgressive identity while reaching a broad audience? What are the legal complications of engaging in a guerrilla marketing campaign or incorporating graffiti or “aerosol art” and cannabis into fashion, personal care, and other consumer lifestyle products? Ultimately, what are the social, cultural, and legal challenges of keeping it real?

Real Deals: Secrets of effective licensing and collaborations

Why settle for one brand when two will do? Whether designer x retailer, influencer x fashion house, or luxury label x contemporary or mass market company, highly publicized collaborations are driving the fashion industry. At the same time, traditional licensing continues to serve as a source of expansion and revenue for both existing and emerging brands. What are the secrets of a successful partnership in today’s market? Are there pros and cons of licensing versus collaboration? Do fashion labels risk diluting their brand value and identity through multiple licenses or collaborations? How can a company determine whether a proposed partnership is a match made in heaven or an unholy alliance? And is the current collaboration craze a temporary trend or the new normal? This limited-edition panel is brought to you by the letter X.


Hyperreality: AI, privacy, and virtual retail

Is your on-trend designer, insightful stylist, or simpatico sales assistant actually an algorithm? Are virtual and augmented reality the key to reinvigorating retail? Artificial intelligence, virtual reality, and new hybrids are useful tools for predicting what consumers want, allowing customers to try on clothes without ever reaching for a zipper, and even staying one step ahead of counterfeiters – especially when these technologies are refined through access to large volumes of data such as sales figures, product reviews, and social media commentary. Privacy concerns have arisen, however, in the wake of data leaks and increased public awareness of the systematic collection and storage of both personally identifiable and aggregate data.  How have the E.U.’s GDPR and subsequent legislation changed the nascent use of AI and VR in fashion? Has the law caught up with the need to protect not only consumers but also both human and virtual creators and their creations? In other words, is the law prepared for the future of fashion?

Real Possibilities: Recent developments in fashion law

Fashion is all about new, now, next, and the law moves almost as fast as the industry. This lightning-round panel will keep you on the cutting edge of developing issues including how to navigate the transformed landscape of retail real estate and the counterintuitive resurgence of luxury malls; antitrust investigations in the U.S. and E.U.; trademark trials and tribulations ranging from the FUCT case pending before the U.S. Supreme Court to ongoing litigation over retail resale and authenticity; competing cosmetics regulation bills under consideration in Congress; and the Federal Trade Commission’s entry into the debate over whether lab-grown diamonds are “real.”

Really? Dolce & Gabbana, Galliano, and other unfashionable faux pas

Call-out culture has raised awareness of racially and ethnically sensitive issues, but despite a steady stream of social media attention to inflammatory incidents and unfortunate products, the fashion industry as a whole is struggling to adapt. How have brands responded to backlash? What is the appropriate response to a public relations crisis, beyond a standard apology? How can innovative inclusivity initiatives change the face of fashion? And what are the newest employment laws and regulations lighting the way?



9th Annual Symposium Sponsors