by Stephen Garner

The American Apparel & Footwear Association (AAFA) revealed its final format and line-up for the 2020 American Image Awards. This year’s event will be taking place as a star-studded digital gala on Wednesday, September 23rd from 4:00 PM to 5:15 PM, EDT.  The program was rescheduled from April and reimagined in the wake of the pandemic.

“Celebrating Fashion’s Future,” is the theme of the night, which will commemorate five honorees for their outstanding leadership, vision, and achievements in the fashion industry. The American Image Awards benefits the Council of Fashion Designers of America’s Foundation as it advances design and manufacturing innovation through mentorships and business grants.  

This year’s honorees include Kenneth Cole – Person of the Year; Ralph Lauren Corporation – Company of the Year; Brandon Maxwell – Designer of the Year; Alibaba Group – Retail Innovator of the Year; Bravo/Project Runway – Fashion Maverick.

“The American Image Awards is about celebrating the future of the fashion industry and highlighting the exceptional work of those that are leading the way,” said Steve Lamar, president and CEO of AAFA. “No one could have predicted the impact COVID-19 would have on our world, our industry, or our daily lives. But this industry is resilient and focused on finding new ways to survive and thrive in the current environment. We still believe the future of fashion is bright – exemplified by our talented slate of honorees, who we are excited to shine a spotlight on in a unique way this year.”

The evening will be emceed by award-winning journalist and CNN anchor Brooke Baldwin. She will be joined by award-winning designer Jeffrey Banks, who will share a personal tribute to the late Isabel Toledo, who, along with her incredibly talented partner Ruben Toledo, designed the American Image Awards statuette.

“We appreciate the support the AAFA has given to the CFDA over the past four years,” added Steven Kolb, president and CEO of the CFDA. “Our efforts to develop and operate impactful programming are directly strengthened through our relationship with the AAFA.”