Understanding sustainability in fashion is critical because of the negative impact that the fashion industry and our consumption habits are having on garment workers and our environment. Fashion is the second largest polluter in the world primarily because of textile and manufacturing waste. Additionally, many fashion industry workers perform their duties in unsafe conditions while earning barely enough to feed their families. It’s important to understand how to lessen your carbon footprint while supporting fair wages and working conditions for garment workers.
DCSFC is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization whose purpose is to foster and educate a community of creative entrepreneurs, lawmakers, designers, activists, academics, fashion professionals, and consumers in the D.C. Metropolitan Area on the importance of sustainability and ethical practices in the fashion industry. Established in February 2018, DCSFC is poised to develop educational programs, retail opportunities, workforce development/training initiatives, and networking opportunities for the local creative, sustainable and ethical communities.
Gabrielle Clary is a budding fashion sustainability entrepreneur. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Global Business from Trinity Washington University. She will be receiving her Master’s Degree in Sustainability Management from the Kogod School of Business from American University. Gabrielle discovered her interests in sustainability during a research trip to Denmark where she studied the development of the 100% renewable energy Island Samsø. Since that trip, Gabrielle has focused her interest towards the fashion industry’s growing awareness for sustainability.
Joelle Firzli is an independent fashion researcher, writer, speaker, critic, and stylist with a global outlook on fashion and a first-hand knowledge of the industry. She believes fashion can serve as a tool to drive change, disrupt the status-quo, and make a more sustainable way of living. She holds a MA in Fashion Studies from Parsons with knowledge of fashion history and theory. Her research interests include sustainable fashion, non-Western fashion and textiles, and more. Her work has been presented worldwide and she’s been featured in publications such as the Business of Fashion, the Huffington Post, the New York Times, Marie Claire Arabia, Elle Vietnam, and more.
Janice Wallace is the editor-in-chief of Cultivons (www.cultivons.co), a website focused on curating sustainable fashion, food, and home goods in an effort to build a sustainable life. She is also the Creative Director at The Fashion Parade, a branding and design agency helping small businesses (primarily fashion businesses) to create smart, successful brands through engaging content, digital design, and social media engagement. She’s a D.C. native and a graduate of Howard University with a B.A. in Journalism.
Danielle Nkojo is a Sustainability Professional, a Reuse Maven and a Circular Economy Advocate. Her 15-year career has been a steady march toward encouraging sustainable consumption and helping to build the foundations of a local circular economy. As a member of DC's Urban Sustainability Team, Danielle is part of the core team updating the Sustainable DC Plan (SDC 2.0). Danielle works collaboratively with both the public and private sectors to shape policies focused on source reduction and sustainable procurement. She recently launched ReThread DC, the District’s first textile recovery and reuse initiative.
Prior to joining Sustainable DC, Danielle founded Perfectly Good, an online clothing reuse boutique and led a team of Recycling Specialists to manage a countywide program to promote sustainable waste management practices among the local commercial and multifamily sector. She spent several years as a partner in a local environmental consulting firm and has also served as DC’s Brownfields Coordinator and as an Assistant Regional Counsel at the US Environmental Protection Agency.
Danielle volunteers as a Brand Ambassador for Goodwill of Greater Washington and is a proud alumna of Vermont Law School.
Emilia Ferrara is a born-and-raised Washingtonian, an author, editor and teacher, and has worked as a fashion journalist for over 10 years. After attending the National Cathedral School, she earned her B.A. in English and Philosophy from Georgetown University, graduating Cum Laude. She immediately matriculated to Columbia's Graduate School of Journalism, where she earned her masters and began working at T: The New York Times Style Magazine.
In 2016 Ferrara founded Capitally Magazine, an online publication reporting on sustainable fashion, green beauty and wellness. Ferrara's first book, Mag World: Mad Magazines, Fad Fashion, Bad Beauty and Finding the Way Out was published in 2017 by Gilbert Robinson. In 2019, Mayor Muriel Bowser appointed her to the D.C. Commission on Fashion Arts and Events. In addition to her role as commissioner, she currently serves as editor-in-chief of Capitally Magazine and is an adjunct at Georgetown University, teaching fashion journalism.
Allie Gardner is the Business Development Manager at GoodWeave, an international NGO based in Washington, DC that works to end child labor, forced labor, and bonded labor in global supply chains. She holds a Master of Arts in Public Anthropology from American University, as well as a dual Bachelor of Arts in Anthropology and Spanish Studies from American University.
Kaveri Marathe is the Founder and CEO of Texiles, a clothing recycling startup based in Washington, DC. She moved to DC in 2011 to pursue her Master's in International Relations at Georgetown University where she focused on energy and environmental policy. She has spent the last few years working as a sustainability consultant and she launched Texiles in 2017. With Texiles, Kaveri is focused on eradicating textile waste in American landfills by offering consumers an alternative to throwing clothing in the trash. Texiles achieves this by offering a home pickup of used clothing and household linens and through drop-off stations in like-minded retail venues around the city.