British model Naomi Campbell who has been in the fashion industry for 33 years said in an interview that diversity in the fashion industry has “finally … sunken in but now we hope people don’t think it’s in for a trend”. According to Campbell, “there’s always more room for improvement. There’s still some ways to go” when it comes to equal pay.
The 49-year-old Campbell was the first black model to appear on the covers of French Vogue and Time magazine as well as on the cover of American Vogue’s key September issue.
Campbell began her career at age 15 and has modeled for fashion heavyweights, such as Versace, Chanel, Prada, Dolce Gabbana, among many others. She has also championed African designers and co-produced April’s Arise Fashion Week in Lagos, Nigeria. She said that African designers were finally getting recognition which “they deserve to have.”
One of the five major supermodels of the early 1990s, Campbell has featured on the covers of more than 500 magazines. However, she wrote in this month’s British Vogue she only recently began feeling more at ease in her own skin.
Campbell founded charitable organization Fashion For Relief in 2005 and hosted catwalk shows to raise funds for causes that have included victims of Hurricane Katrina and Typhoon Haiyan. She began her charity work with the late South African president Nelson Mandela, who referred to her as “honorary granddaughter.”
The British Fashion Council announced on June 24 that Campbell would receive the Fashion Icon Award at December’s Fashion Awards 2019 in recognition of her industry contribution and charity work. Campbell said the award was “an honor and thrill.”