2016 Speakers

Our 2016 Speakers & Performers

Our Hosts & Performers

Chenese Lewis

Chenese Lewis

Emcee & Host


Frenchie Davis

Frenchie Davis

Teal Carpet Host


Grande Beauty

Grande Beauty

Spoken Word Artist

The Business of Plus Size Fashion Panelists

Presented by HippsToo
Nikki Free

Nikki Free


Monif Clarke

Monif Clarke

Designer of Monif C Plus Sizes


Gwen DeVoe

Gwen DeVoe

Creator of FFFWeek


Susan Moses

Susan Moses

Author & Celeb Stylist


Sarah Rae

Sarah Rae

Blogger at RavingsbyRae.com

Styling 101 Panelists

Presented by Dia & Co
Porsha Coleman

Porsha Coleman

Moderator & Stylist


Meaghan O'Connor

Meaghan O'Connor

Witty, creative and fashion-obsessed, Meaghan O’Connor lives in Long Island, New York and is working as a freelance wardrobe stylist and blogger.

Her past experiences has allowed her the opportunity to diversify her skills from leadership and management to merchandising, consulting and styling. Passionate about the fashion industry, Meaghan carved out her own space in her blog/styling website, Little Lime Dress where she continues to work towards her mission of providing women with access to fashion & style tips, tricks and advice from a reliable source while also providing the services of a personal stylist.

With in-store appearances and co-branded events among other collaborations, it’s clear Meaghan’s professional demeanor and keen sense of style have helped secure her position as a successful and reliable source in the fashion industry.

Meaghan continues to work as both an editorial and commercial stylist, while placing her main focus on celebrity styling. She prides herself on creating an experience for each of her clients, Marrying a high-touch, concierge level treatment with laser focus attention to detail, she has been able to not only land on notable looks for each of her clients, but also assist them in building their individual style personalities.

While her website is not deemed exclusively plus size, the style-obsessed founder remains steady in her mission to bring the straight and plus size world together in one space; providing high-fashion interpretations and making runway trends wearable for the everyday woman. Meaghan is a supporter of self acceptance, and her work to promote a positive body image is clear in her writing on Little Lime Dress as well as her other projects.


Shun Melson

Shun Melson

An icon in her own right, you can’t pronounce celebrity stylist Shun Melson’s name without saying the word fashion. She is FaSHUN. Shun has become somewhat of a modern day superwoman, swooping in and transforming her clients from best-dressed list unknowns to media darlings.

Shun boasts a diverse clientele ranging from reality TV ‘it girls’ such as Kim Zolciak-Biermann, Phaedra Parks and Tameka “Tiny” Cottle, to Grammy and Academy award winning entertainers Ledesi, Monica, Fantasia, Ludacris, Gucci Mane, Jennifer Hudson and Tyler Perry. The fashion maven also counts a number of artists (gospel, r&b, rap), professional athletes, housewives and business executives as clients, which explains her often used #NeverNotWerkin hashtag.


Reah Norman

Reah Norman

Stylist


Patrick T Cooper

Patrick T Cooper

Stylist


Nadia

Nadia

Nadia is the Co-Founder and CEO of Dia&Co, a body-positive shopping experience for women who wear sizes 14 and up.

 

Dia&Co stylists work with top brands – from industry staples to up-and-coming young designers – to provide each customer with curated looks to suit their unique style and shape.

 

Two years ago, Nadia was driven to found Dia&Co by the belief that style can act as a catalyst for self-love. Through Dia&Co’s vibrant community this belief is reinforced every day.  Nadia is continually inspired by women looking and feeling beautiful in clothes they were told they couldn’t or shouldn’t wear; embracing the body they have today – and dressing for it. Dia&Co was founded to support these women, and to help every woman find clothes that make her feel uniquely her.

 

Prior to founding Dia&Co, Nadia worked as an investment banker at Perella Weinberg Partners and most recently served as COO and CFO of New York-based jewelry brand Frieda and Nellie. Nadia holds a B.Sc. in Economics from the University of Pennsylvania and an MBA from Harvard Business School. With a Cuban mother and Kuwaiti father, Nadia hails from both Miami and the Middle East, and is currently based in New York.

 

Blogging 101 Panelists

Presented by Ashley Stewart
Tami Reed

Tami Reed

Moderator & Blogger


Amanda Allison

Amanda Allison

Blogger & Vlogger


Liz Black

Liz Black

Liz Black is the creator of the blog P.S. It’s Fashion and the plus fashion writer for Refinery29. She is very passionate about improving and influencing the plus fashion world as well as helping people accept and love themselves for who they are.


Ty Alexander

Ty Alexander

Author & Blogger


Kim

Kim

Blogger

This Body: A Conversation About Body Image Panelists

Presented by Lane Bryant
Erica Watson

Erica Watson

Actress & Comedian


Jes Baker

Jes Baker

Author & Blogger


Shaina Harrison

Shaina Harrison

Shaina Harrison also known as Out of the Corner is a Life stylist and Blogger (Cornerrich.com)who has dedicated her time to Styling lives by creating brave spaces’. Out of the Corner believes a stylist job is to do more than showing her client how to rock the newest trend. She focuses on connecting the dots between self-esteem, self-love, fashion and trauma offering her clients a holistic approach.  Out of the Corner teaches us how to look good from the inside out. She’s a Teacher, a Blogger an Activist, a Crisis Councilor, a Friend, a Comedian, a Stylist, and your Sister.
Over the years Shaina has styled plus size fashion look books and facilitated hundreds of trauma and wellness training’s encouraging her to create the Brave Space INC. ‘Styling Lives by Creating Brave Spaces. A culmination of events and workshops that foster spaces where different points on a journey of learning and growing are acknowledged.  Through interactive presentations, participants engage in critical dialog on self-esteem, beauty, love, sisterhood and trauma.  Workshops coined by the Brave Space Inc, “Recovering from Our Childhoods”, “PLUS and Proud” , “Falling in Love from the Inside Out” and “Motherless Children.” Shaina’s commitment to building stronger communities and power-fullness has been documented by the New Yorker, NBC TV’s Here and Now, NY1 and many other media outlets. Shaina Harrison holds a B.A. from John Jay College of Criminal Justice. A certificate in Fashion Styling from F.I.T

Maui Bigelow

Maui Bigelow

Blogger


Alysse D'Alessandro

Alysse D'Alessandro

Blogger, Designer


LaKrisha Baker

LaKrisha Baker

Designer

Model 101: So you Want to Be a Model Panelists

Sharon Quinn

Sharon Quinn

Statuesque, poised, graceful, striking…all of those adjectives aptly describe attributes belonging to Miss Sharon Quinn, affectionately known as The ORIGINAL Runway Diva, due to her presence, style and unbelievable confidence on the catwalk.

 

She is the Creator and Executive Producer of a educational talk show series that debuted in December 2015 on Manhattan Neighborhood Network’s Lifestyle & HD Channels titled “Model Behavior with Sharon Quinn”. Model Behavior, as in “set an example for…” highlights the careers of guests who have had success in their perspective fields and how they accomplished their achievements. The show airs every Saturday morning at 11:30am also has its own YouTube channel for viewers who live outside of Manhattan.

 

Since 2010 she has also been the Casting Director for Full Figured Fashion Week®, New York City’s first fashion week devoted exclusively to plus sizes.

 

In 2014 Ebony Magazine listed her as one of “6 Plus Fashion Power Players on the Rise” and in January 2016 she was listed as a “Curve Celebre” (or plus industry influencer) by Curvysta Magazine.  The hugely popular blog “The Curvy Fashionista” recently listed her as one of “25 Women of Color Who Paved the Way for Body Positivity & Plus Size Fashion”. 

 

The 6 foot tall, shaved head beauty’s most recent TV appearances include returns to MTV’s MADE and ABC TV’s The View, she also appeared on Nuvo TV’s highly successful series “Curvy Girls” and in TV One’s hit reality series R&B Divas. Her most recent film credits include two award winning documentaries, “Plus! A Documentary” (2015) and “The Sixty-Six Percent” (2016).

 

A modern Renaissance woman, blazing trails wherever she goes, Sharon also teaches private runway instruction to aspiring models and travels around the country speaking to women, both younger and older, about the power of loving oneself…first. The multi-talented Miss Sharon Quinn, who believes in surrounding herself with positive people and positive things, is a standout model/singer/songwriter/actress/author—and role model. She stands head and shoulders above the rest.


Lesley Pedraza

Lesley Pedraza

Photographer


Liris Crosse

Liris Crosse

Model


Alexandra Boos

Alexandra Boos

Model Agent


Chyna McGarity has worked as a model for more than 30 years and is an expert in her field.  Her career has included every aspect of the modeling industry, from commercial print, editorial, catalog, runway, tradeshows, bridal, industrials and as a spokesperson.   She has continued to achieve and excel at her career and walk the catwalk for major clients such as Hanes‐Just My Size, Neiman Marcus, Macy’s, Saks Fifth Avenue, Bloomingdale’s, Liz Claiborne, Sara Lee Advertising, Cato’s, Charming Shops, Kohl’s, Carson Pirie & Scott, Jones New York, Champion Jogbra, Delta Burke Designs, Emme Style, Kmart, JCPenney, and Sears ‐ just to name a few.   Also, Chyna has been a guest on National Television for E! Entertainment with The View/Barbara Walters, Delta Burke, and Dateline NBC.

Chyna is the author of  Not a Number, Nor a Size JUST REAL  ‐ Getting Started in Plus Size Modeling.    Her e‐book talks about ‐  How to get started in the industry, Modeling as a Business, A Model’s Toolbox,  other types of modeling, How to select an Agency and a Photographer, What questions should be asked, Freelance Modeling, sample contracts, resources and much more.    She is also featured in Getting Well: Mind, Body & Spirit and “You’re On Stage! Image, Etiquette, Branding & Style” She shares her personal experiences on what it takes to be a successful model, and gives insight regarding the pros and cons of the plus modeling industry. It is important to do your research on any type of endeavor, whether it is choosing a college, obtaining employment, or pursuing a modeling or fashion career.  Also, an individual must maintain the highest degree of personal self‐esteem and unyielding spirituality in order to cope with the setbacks which are inevitable in this competitive market place.

Chyna McGarity is also the Founder of PurpleCasketCampaign, an organization that provides nurturing, caring and support for victims of Domestic Violence and advocates by providing education and resources to the community to take a stand against domestic violence. Having personally experienced the trauma of domestic violence over twenty years ago, today she is a passionate survivor whose goal is to help others walk in the fullness of their potential.  Chyna upholds the mission to reverse the cycle of abuse for both male and female victims.    A woman of great vision, Chyna’s mission is to communicate to all that the proper guidance and education combined with the will to succeed are the key to success…against all odds!

Want to be a Speaker for 2017?

Check out our Speaker Information page, as this year we will have a call for speakers AND sessions!
Have you ever wanted to speak and share your knowledge with others? Well, here is your chance! We will have many more panels and workshops, digging a bit deeper, focusing on topics and content that you have called out for! Get all of the details and information and sign up for our newsletter, so that you will be notified when deets drop! 
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