Speaker - Joseph Abboud

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Lifestyle designer Joseph Abboud was drawn to the fashion business by an appreciation for quality and elegance. He studied comparative literature at the University of Massachusetts and later attended the Sorbonne in Paris, where he grew to love the polished sophistication of European style. In 1968, the Boston native joined noted retailer Louis Boston, where over the next 12 years he served as Buyer, Merchandiser, and eventually Coordinator of Promotion and Advertising. Three years as Director of Menswear Design for Polo Ralph Lauren further refined his vision of men's style.

Since the launch of his eponymous collection in 1987, Mr. Abboud has been lauded for his unique approach to color styling. One of the designer's more distinguishing characteristics is his timeless application and treatment of varying tones and colors that remain ever relevant within a man's life and style. Such attributes have lead to numerous honors throughout his career, including back-to-back Menswear Designer of the Year awards from the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA) in 1989 and 1990--a feat that no other designer has celebrated.

In the fall of 2008, Mr. Abboud launched his American luxury menswear collection, jaz, in finer retail boutiques and specialty stores across the United States. The same year, he developed Black/Brown 1826, a modern American brand that debuted at key department stores in the U.S. and Canada. Today, as President and Chief Creative Officer for HMX Group, he leads the design direction for all portfolio brands including Hickey Freeman, Hart Schaffner Marx, Coppley, Bobby Jones, and Austin Reed collections.

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