11th Annual HBS Charity Fashion Show

Begum Agca Okutgen, Contributor

The Retail and Luxury Goods Club successfully hosted their famous Annual Charity Fashion Show on October 25th at Boston’s Park Plaza Hotel.  In the 2018 edition of the longstanding HBS tradition, the Fashion Show featured 35 RC and EC models, showcasing styles from top designers to raise money for the Greater Boston Food Bank. This year’s designer line up included Diane von Furstenberg, Cynthia Rowley, Lilly Pulitzer, Hugo Boss, Reformation, Rent the Runway, Ted Baker, Halston Heritage, Ministry of Supply and Kenny Flowers.  With 400 attendees and these top-notch designers, the Fashion Show this year raised over $4,000 for the charity.

Guests started to arrive early and formed a line at the entrance before doors were open. The 200 gift bags didn’t last long shortly afterwards. Starting from the moment when the lead organizers Begum Agca Okutgen (MBA ’19), Brooklyn Coats and Sheetal Bajaj welcomed guests, the energy in Park Plaza’s Grand Ballroom was about to go very high.

Fashion Show organizers Begum Agca Okutgen, Brooklyn Coats and Sheetal Bajaj

After their energizing kick off, the lights dimmed and the hour long show started when Josephine Van Leeuwen (MBA ‘19) and Sud Murugesu (MBA ‘19), in their Ted Baker outfits, stepped on the runway in flashing lights and accompanied by pump up songs. After Josephine and Sud, one after the other, all HBS models, who were dressed to impress, began to shine their way through the runway. Their dance moves, graceful walks and amazing looks were more than enough to mesmerize the cheering fans and loving section mates.

As the runway was on fire with the models and the cheering crowd, in the back of the Grand Ballroom guests enjoyed various food and drink options and the chance to participate in a raffle featuring donations from brands including Rag & Bone, Moleskine, Pure Barre, Roscomar and Aesop.

The show’s closing heated up when the Kenny Flowers male swimwear line was introduced.  James Lim (MBA ‘20) led off the swimwear section in style. Other models kept up the cool as they strolled down the runway accompanied by giant floaties. After Vai Schierholtz (MBA ‘19)’s epic finale, RLGC co-presidents Melissa Zoerb & Sergio Velasquez-Terjesen closed off the show and the runway turned into one big dance party!

The party continued at Icon, co-hosted by RLGC and the Euro Club. Kudos to RC Section G for winning the VIP section at the after party by selling the most tickets and having the most fun!

Let’s end hunger together!

Over the last 3 years, RLGC has donated over $20,000 to the Greater Boston Food Bank, the largest hunger-relief nonprofit organization in the Northeast.  According to the organization, every $1 donated provides three meals for local families in need, with roughly $0.92 per dollar going directly to feeding families.  In 2016, GBFB raised $15.5 million and distributed 48.1 million meals (82% of which met the highest nutrition standards). The organization serves 140,000 residents of Eastern Massachusetts each month.  With Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays coming up, it is a great time to give back and make a donation to this important cause. For more information, please visit: www.gbfb.org.

Begum Agca Okutgen (MBA’19) is a second year MBA and a board member at RLGC and Euro Club. Begum was a management consultant at Bain & Company in London before HBS. She is passionate about social impact and is currently working on her own sustainable fashion brand.