Meet Our Panel of International Judges
HH Radhikaraje Gaekwad
Queen of Vadodara, Gujarat, India | Heritage Conservationist | Textile Revivalist
Meet HH Radhikaraje Gaekwad, Rani (Queen) of Baroda - Gujarat, India. HH Rani Radhikaraje is a heritage conservationist, textile revivalist, wildlife enthusiast, history narrator, traveller, writer, public speaker and Director of CDS Art Foundation. With a Masters in Indian History, Maharani Radhika Raje has worked as a journalist for leading magazines and dailies and is a connoisseur of traditional fashion too.
She is the daughter of Maharajkumar Dr. Ranjitsinhji of Wankaner and wife of Maharaja Simarjit Singh Rao Gaekwad and resides in the 142-year-old grand Lakshmi Vilas Palace in Gujarat. Four times bigger than London’s Buckingham Palace, the Lakshmi Vilas Palace is spread across 500 acres with 176 rooms. It is said to be amongst the largest palaces built to date. She looks after the digitalization of the assets of the palace.
Lifestyle Journalist | Sustainability Activist | TEDx Speaker
As Vogue India’s Editor-at-Large for 13 years, Bandana is one of India’s foremost authorities on fashion and lifestyle. She is a Special Advisor to Copenhagen Fashion Summit and sits on several advisory boards—NEST (NYC), Redress (Hong Kong), Global Fashion Agenda (Stockholm), South Asian Fashion Show (NYC) amongst others. Bandana writes for The Business of Fashion on a variety of topics from indigenous ‘made-by-hand’ economies of India and Indonesia, to transgender and LGBTQ representation in fashion and on ancient Indian wisdom—Vedanta. Her pieces have also appeared in The New York Times, Vogue Arabia, Harper’s Bazaar India, US Vogue, UK Vogue, Wallpaper*, and Tank, in addition to several leading Indian journals such as Platform, Hindustan Times and The Hindu. She has scripted and hosted 50 episodes of ‘Simply Style” the first fashion series in Indian television, as well as the first series of fashion webisodes online. As a TEDx speaker she travels the world speaking about mindfulness in the luxury business, with a special focus on Gandhi & Fashion—a speech that focuses on sartorial integrity. Follow her on Instagram+Twitter @behavebandana
Chairperson, Textiles, Fashion Institute of Technology
Nomi Dale Kleinman is a textile designer and artist based in the Hudson Valley. Her work is rooted in the complex structure of woven cloth. She employs both the digital and hand techniques available in making textiles and art that reflects the human experience. Her most recent collaboration is with fashion designer Mimi Prober to develop fabrics from locally made fibers, one of which was shown at New York Fashion Week. Nomi joined the Textile Surface Design department at the Fashion Institute of Technology in 2007 and currently serves as Chair and Associate Professor. Her research centers on sustainable textiles and slow design. Previous to FIT, Nomi worked for the high-end residential fabric house Scalamandre, American Silk Mills Inc., where she worked in various roles including Director of CAD Design and Senior Designer for almost 10 years. Her fabrics have placed in the lines of textile companies such as Pollack & Associates, Beacon Hill and Kravet. In 2003, she took a sabbatical from ASM, traveling to Africa and Southeast Asia and studied traditional weaving techniques in Laos. In 2004, she earned American Silk Mills’ Designer of the Year Award. She graduated from the Rhode Island School of Design with a BFA in Textiles.
Assistant Chair Accessories, Fashion Institute of Technology
Sarah Mullins is the Assistant Chair of the Footwear and Accessories Design department at the Fashion Institute of Technology. She teaches CAD, product development, and senior thesis classes. In addition to teaching, Sarah is a designer specializing in accessories, print and pattern design. She has co-authored several books on making handbags and belts. The most specialized products she makes are the hyena paws for the Broadway and touring productions of the Lion King.
Fair Fashion Ambassador
Marina Spadafora gained a reputation worldwide for her own collection that featured sophisticated knitwear .
Since then she has collaborated as senior design consultant with Prada, Miu Miu, Ferragamo and currently Marni. Marina's work has always included a strong social and environmental focus, believing that ethics and aesthetics can coincide.
Her motto is " Fashion with a mission". Marina works to bring development to the emerging economies through Fair Fashion.
She is the Italian country coordinator for Fashion Revolution, a global movement that aims at raising consciousness among consumers about their buying habits and advocates for a more fair and ethical Fashion industry.
Marina has received the United Nations Women Together Award in 2015 in New York and has done a TEDx Talk on sustainable Fashion in 2014.
Marina is a currently consulting for luxury fashion brands and holds worldwide seminars and conferences on responsible Fashion.
Marina has written the book “ La rivoluzione comincia dal tuo armadio”about sustainable fashion with journalist Luisa Ciuni, Solferino Libri 2020.
Preeti Gopinath is Associate Professor and the founding Director of the newly launched Textiles MFA program at Parsons, The New School. A graduate of the 5-year Professional Education Program of the National Institute of Design (India), Preeti is an internationally experienced textile designer, CAD expert and an acclaimed educator with over 25 years of international experience in both industry and the classroom. She is also a Bharatanatyam dancer, an actor and a philosopher with a special interest in Plato and Vedanta studies; all of which inform her career and that she seamlessly integrates into her life.
Preeti’s textiles practice ranges from creative textile design to craft research and managing fabric development for several major textile companies in India, Canada and USA. Her experience as an educator includes being a founding faculty member at Srishti School of Art, Design and Technology in Bangalore, India, teaching at George Brown Collegeand Sheridan Institute in Canada, and teaching in the Textile Development & Marketing department at the Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) in New York. Since joining the School of Fashion at Parsons (New York), in January 2018, Preeti has developed a unique graduate-level textiles program that sits at the intersection of craft and technology, on the bedrock values of sustainability, social justice and wellbeing. Working closely with design visionary Li Edelkoort and team of extraordinary faculty, Preeti leads the Textiles MFA program which aims to prepare global citizens to do meaningful work in the world through making and designing textiles to meet the realities of the 21st century. Her students have developed textiles that address a variety of issues including injustices around migration, climate change, sustainability and the conservation of traditional crafts. The success of Preeti’s unique pedagogical methodology is evidenced by the award winning textiles that her students have produced, already bringing home honors and global recognition to Parsons in the field of textiles, design, sustainability and materiality.