TOMMY HILFIGER is pleased to announce Megan Smith as the winner of the New Legacy Challenge. Now in its second year, the New Legacy Challenge is a design competition developed through a partnership between Tommy Hilfiger’s People’s Place Program and Harlem’s Fashion Row (HFR).
Created to offer career support and access for underrepresented communities in fashion, the New Legacy Challenge celebrates the voices of a new generation of BIPOC designers. This year, award-winning actress, producer and renowned leader in the field of inclusivity, Yara Shahidi, joined the judging panel and amplified the spotlight on this year’s finalists: Jameel Mohammed, Megan Smith and Tavon Davis.
The three 2023 finalists were each paired with a TOMMY HILFIGER mentor and asked to create six prep looks for their final collections. Following the New Legacy Challenge finale showcase held at The Metrograph in New York City on May 24, 2023, Mr. Tommy Hilfiger and Yara Shahidi announced this year’s winner: Megan Smith. In addition to a $25,000 grant, Megan will receive the opportunity to collaborate on a capsule collection with the TOMMY HILFIGER design team.
“Jameel Mohammed, Megan Smith and Tavon Davis have brought the New Legacy Challenge to new heights with their creativity and vision,” said Tommy Hilfiger. “Their passion and work make me more optimistic for the future of our industry than ever. Congratulations to Megan Smith, a deserving winner! And thank you to Yara, Brandice and the Harlem’s Fashion Row team - this evening would not be possible without their long-term partnership.”
The finale represented the culmination of a competition that started with 12 shortlisted contestants, which had been reduced to five following a virtual showcase. The three finalists were selected by judges including Tommy Hilfiger, Yara Shahidi and last year’s winner Clarence Ruth. On May 22, 2023, Jameel, Megan, and Tavon presented their collections, revealing their inspiration and concepts to the jury panel at The EDITION Times Square Hotel.
- Jameel Mohammed: Creative Director of Khiry, a studio that explores new objects and experiences, producing art works, limited edition products and content in an Afrofuturist image.
- Megan Smith: Founder of Megan Renee, a sustainable women’s contemporary brand that draws inspiration from the strength and beauty of all women, with bold prints and strong shapes as the signature look.
- Tavon Davis: His label, Victory Lap, is inspired by sports and its ability to break down barriers, as his work is driven by a desire to celebrate Black men, Black women, and people of color.
In line with the People’s Place Program’s mission to promote the inclusion of individuals from Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) communities in the fashion and creative industries, a talented group of diverse creatives collaborated with the finalists providing support both in front of and behind the camera. The team included:
- Photographer: Danny Kasirye (@dannykasirye)
- Director: Anthony Prince Leslie (@anthonyprinceleslie)
- Models: Akuol Deng (@akuoldengatem) and Souleymane Sacko (@king_souley_)
The finale also included the screening of the second New Legacy Challenge docuseries, this year directed by award-winning filmmaker Anthony Prince Leslie. The documentary, which gives the audience an inside look at the challenge, will be released on TOMMY HILFIGER channels globally from May 24th.
The People’s Place Program was launched in July 2020 as a three-pillared platform with the mandate to advance the representation of diverse leaders within the fashion and creative industries. Centering around partnerships, career access and industry leadership, the program seeks to achieve consistent, long-term change. The program takes its name from Tommy Hilfiger’s first store which opened in 1969 in Hilfiger’s hometown of Elmira, New York. At only 18 years old, Hilfiger created the People’s Place as a dedicated space for people from all walks of life to come together to enjoy art, music, fashion and pop culture. Shaped by the cultural revolution of the 1960s, the original store fostered an exchange of ideas, encouraged authentic self-expression and challenged social norms. It is in this spirit that the new People’s Place Program has been founded and will continue to expand.
For more information please visit: https://tom.my/tommy-x-harlems-fashion-row