Stephan Weiss Studio was filled with major names in fashion and politics last eve. The occasion? Hillary Rodham Clinton, Nadja Swarovski, and late producer and talent manager Sandy Gallin were honored with the Stephan Weiss Apple Awards, created by Donna Karan in 2011 in memory of her late husband, artist Stephan Weiss. The honor recognizes people who are making a difference in preservation of culture, healthcare, and educations, all hallmarks of her Urban Zen Foundation.
The guest list ran long with familiar names like Andy Cohen, Bernadette Peters, Calvin Klein, Camilla Staerk, Christie Brinkley, Diane von Furstenberg, Helena Christensen, Hugh Jackman and Deborra-Lee Furness, Huma Abedin, Inez van Lamsweerde & Vinoodh Matadin, Kelly Klein, Kenneth Cole and Maria Cuomo Cole, Maria Borges, Prabal Gurung, Russell James, Sandra Brant, Stefano Tonchi and David Maupin, Trey Laird, Vera Wang, founder of Women for Women International Zainab Salbi, and others.
If you’re wondering what the hand fans were about, it was all part of the #FanforHaiti Instagram campaign, which raises awareness and preserves the culture of Haiti through social media. The fans are made from recycled paper and hand-painted by Haitian artisans.
“Urban Zen connects the dots of all the things we care about—the past: preservation of culture. The present: healthcare. And the future: education. Urban Zen was created to be the calm in the chaos,” said Karan, addressing the crowd.
“Listening to Donna tonight, her gratitude shines through. So, I hope that all of us will draw inspiration from her as we think about what more we can do,” Clinton said when accepting her award. “Follow her lead, find concrete ways to demonstrate our gratitude, our doing good, celebrate leaders like Donna [Karan], Zaina [Salbi], Nadja [Swarovski], and my dear friend Diane [von Furstenberg], who take on ambitious projects, particularly on behalf of women and girls, and support organizations like the Urban Zen Foundation. That is why I came tonight, to say thank you…”
“As a designer, entrepreneur, mother and humanitarian, Donna is an icon, visionary, and fearless leader,” Swarovski said. “And at every turn in Hillary’s career, she shattered a glass ceiling and made it a little easier on all the women coming up after her. At Swarovski we don’t think in quarters, but in generations, and I’m inspired by my children and what kind of world their generation will inhabit.”