The briefing is co-organized with the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA), Fashion Revolution, Fordham University, and United Nations Association of New York
24 February 2021
9:30 - 11:30 a.m. EST
Bruce Knotts was a Peace Corps Volunteer in Ethiopia, worked for Raytheon in Saudi Arabia (1976-80) and on a World Bank contract in Somalia (1982-4), before he joined the Department of State as a U.S. diplomat in 1984. Bruce had diplomatic assignments in Greece, Zambia, India, Pakistan, Kenya, Sudan, Cote d’Ivoire and The Gambia, where he served as Deputy Chief of Mission. While in Cote d’Ivoire, Bruce served as the U.S. Government’s Regional Refugee Coordinator for West Africa. Bruce worked closely with several United Nations Special Representatives and observed UN peacekeeping operations in Sierra Leone from 2000-2003. Bruce retired from the Foreign Service in 2007 and began directing the Unitarian Universalist Association Office at the United Nations (UU@UN) in 2008. Bruce founded faith-based advocacy for sexual orientation/gender identity human rights at the United Nations and continues to advocate for the rights of women, indigenous peoples and for sustainable development in moral terms of faith and values. Bruce is frequently invited to speak on various topics at venues around the world including recently in the United States, Canada, Mexico, China, Republic of Korea, Ghana, The Philippines, Taiwan, and Vietnam. Bruce is adjunct faculty at New York University teaching a senior policy course on refugees and migration for Master of Social Work (MSW) students. Bruce is co-chair of the NGO Committee on Human Rights at the United Nations, the chair of the NGO Committee on Disarmament, Peace and Security, a member of the NGO Security Council Working Group, and he chaired the NGO/DPI Executive Committee (2015-19) representing DPI (now DGC) affiliated NGOs at the United Nations. Bruce is a trustee of the Parliament of the World’s Religions and serves as the co-moderator of the steering committee of Religions for Peace, USA. He is a Commissioner for the Buddhist Tzu Chi Foundation. In 2006, Bruce Knotts and Isaac Humphrie were wed in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. Isaac works internationally as a venue manager for New York Fashion Week, event environmentalist, photographer and social media consultant.
Jeff Trexler created the Fashion Ethics, Sustainability, and Development course at Fordham University School of Law and has taught it for over a decade. As an attorney and consultant, Trexler advises clients that include fashion brands, nonprofits, and social ventures. He has moderated or spoken on dozens of panels around the world pertaining to sustainability, ethics, and legal issues, and his publications address contemporary concerns in comparative international fashion ethics.
Tara Rangarajan is the Head of Communications, Brand Relationships and Country Programmes, based in the International Labour Office (ILO) in Geneva. In her role, she is part of Better Work’s Senior Management Team and oversees Better Work’s engagement with international brands, the global communications team, and country programmes in the Americas. She is also responsible for working with the International Finance Corporation (IFC) and US-based partner organizations. Prior to her role in Geneva, Tara opened the Better Work global office in Bangkok and oversaw the global team in Asia. Tara began her career in the ILO by starting the Better Work Vietnam program, which she led for five years.
Tara came to the ILO after 10 years of working on corporate social responsibility at Business for Social Responsibility (BSR). She has worked extensively on international labour standards issues with the apparel, electronics, automotive and agriculture sectors. Her focus is on improving working conditions through facilitating dialogue between international companies, local enterprises, unions, governments and civil society representatives. Tara taught corporate social responsibility at the University of Michigan Business School and worked as a journalist, covering international development in Asia, Africa, Latin America and the United States. She has a master’s degree in international economic and political development from Columbia University and a B.A. from the University of Michigan.
Ayesha is a social entrepreneur with a passion for building sustainable supply chains that respect people and our planet. With over a decade of leadership to promote social justice and sustainability within the fashion industry, she founded Remake to ignite a conscious consumer movement. Remake’s films, stories and immersive journeys rebuild human connections with the women who make our clothes. Ayesha is passionate about where things come from, who made them and what their lives are like. She has worked with brands, governments, and labor advocates to improve the lives of the women who make our clothes. She led brand engagement at Better Work, a World Bank and UN partnership to ensure safe and decent working conditions within garment factories around the world. She was head of consumer products at BSR, providing strategic advice to brands including H&M, Levi Strauss & Co., Marks and Spencer, Nike, The Walt Disney Company and Pou Chen on the design and integration of sustainability into business. She holds a master’s in public policy from the University of California, Berkeley.
Cyril Naicker is a sought-after fashion consultant, mentor and influencer in the South African fashion space. He is often called upon to speak at events or write for prominent international fashion publications such as Glamour and Elle. A fashion ad esigner by qualification, he has spent the last twenty years working in almost every aspect of the fashion industry. He has built an exceptional reputation for his ethical stance on fashion and has become one of the trailblazers leading the sustainable fashion movement in South Africa. Cyril currently serves as the Chief Executive Officer at Im- print Luxury. He is a founding member of Fashion Revolution in Cape Town, and is currently the Country Coordinator for Fashion Revolution, South Africa.
Hyejune Park, Ph.D. is an Assistant Professor of Fashion Merchandising in the Department of Design, Housing and Merchandising at Oklahoma State University, USA. Her research focuses on sustainable consumption of fashion products in the consumer-brand relationship context and other alternative fashion consumption modes related to circular business models such as resale, rental, and second-hand retail. Her recent research examined the mechanism of brand loyalty formation for sustainable fashion and fast fashion brands and the triple bottom line model as it is applied to customer-centric sustainability for fashion brands.