Tag Archives: Victor Vega

Intimate Insider: Victor Vega of Wacoal America

19 Mar

Victor Vega of Wacoal America

In a world where the average worker changes jobs three to five times over the course of their lifetime, Intimate Insider Victor Vega is a statistical anomaly.  He began his career as a warehouse worker with Wacoal America, and by 2005 found himself in the position of Sr. Vice President of Inventory Production and Sales Management through hard work and dedication. 

I’ve been lucky enough to get to know Mr. Vega personally through various organizations like The Underfashion Club and the Intimate Apparel Square Club.  I have found him to be a “true gentleman,”  he is kind, honest, and humble.  I caught up with him just before the Femmy Gala this past January, where he received a Lifetime Achievement Award for his dedication to the intimate apparel industry and for his loyalty to helping others.

I asked Mr. Vega about his lifelong devotion to charitable causes.  “I’ve always believed it is important to give back in our communities” he told me, “especially to those less fortunate.  Helping others motivates me.”  In addition to his participation in the non-profit organizations affiliated with the intimate apparel industry, Mr. Vega is involved with (and holds leadership positions in) numerous civic organizations in his own community.

When asked about the intimates industry as a whole, Mr. Vega said that he has seen many changes in the industry since the beginning of his career, and is looking forward to what the future will bring.  “I hope to see the industry evolve and grow; to have different people involved in it.  We all need to work together to take the industry to the next level, and the infusion of the next generation is wonderful.”

Victor Vega’s contributions to the industry are legendary, but when asked to name his greatest accomplishment, he says it is his good old-fashioned success story.  He’s proud of having worked at the same company for so many years, and for rising to his current position through hard work and dedication.  This year marks his 40th Anniversary with Wacoal America.

Victor Vega is honored with the Lifetime Achievement Award at the 2012 FEMMY Gala

And finally, how does Mr. Vega feel about his Lifetime Achievement Award?  His response is simple and as always, humble.  “It is an honor, especially because it is given by the Underfashion Club which is made up of fellow industry professionals.” he says. 

Mr. Vega is an inspiration to all of us working in the intimate apparel industry.  His dedication to his employer is truly impressive.  But it is his devotion to those less fortunate that really makes an impression on me.  Victor Vega is a rare breed.  I feel privileged to know him and am honored to consider him a friend.

Intimate Affair: The Underfashion Club’s Annual Femmy Gala

6 Feb

On Tuesday, January 31st, 2012, the Underfashion Club hosted its annual Femmy Gala at Cipriani 42nd Street.  The Intimate Affair was hosted by the witty and charismatic celebrity spokesperson Carson Kressley.  When asked to host the annual awards ceremony, Carson Kressley thought to himself “I don’t know anyone as Femmy as me, so that sounds like it could work!” 

Femmy Host Carson Kressley

The annual Femmy Awards Gala is considered the premier event in the intimate apparel industry attracting hundreds of professionals from all aspects of the lingerie industry and related fields.  The awards honor individuals and companies that have significantly contributed to the industry and its growth.  This year’s Gala honored:

Retailer

Century 21 Department Stores

Manufacturer

Fruit of the Loom

Global Supplier

Top Form Brassiere Mfg. Co. Ltd.

Innovation Award

Penn Asia Company Limited

Lifetime Achievement Award

Victor Vega

Senior Vice President I.P.S. Management- Wacoal America, Inc.

Lifetime Achievement Award Honoree Victor Vega

Proceeds from the annual event support the non-profit Underfashion Club’s extensive Scholarship, Awards, Internship and Grants (SAIG) programs.  These efforts bring to life the Underfashion Club’s credo of “Education today for a better industry tomorrow.”

Femmy Gala- FIT Student Design Contest Displays

The highlight of the Intimate Affair was the 9th Annual Student Design Contest featuring the designs of Fashion Institute of Technology students who concentrate their studies on intimate apparel under the direction of FIT Professor Alexandra Armillas.  The students’ Art Deco-inspired designs were displayed at the event and attendees selected three student designers to receive cash awards.  This year’s featured student designers include Nina Trimble who was awarded the first place prize of $4000 for her creation “Deco Diamonds”, the 2nd place prize went to Yecca Zeng, 3rd place was awarded to Lauren Haron and the three other student designers included Claudia Mesiti, Amy Gianforcaro and  Nicole Ward.  The design contest is an integral part of the Underfashion Club’s mission to help educate, influence and attract new talent into the intimate apparel industry. 

Carson Kressley, Underfashion Club Board Members & Femmy Gala FIT Student Design Contest Winners

About the Underfashion Club

It is the mission of the Underfashion Club to raise funds and expend energy to safeguard the present and future health of the intimate apparel industry by supporting education of new talent, attracting this talent to careers in Intimate Apparel and to act as good citizens in the local community within which the industry exists. 

The club’s Femmy Award Gala is the most prestigious event of the Intimate Apparel Industry.  The annual Femmy Gala is held in recognition of outstanding executives for exceptional achievements.  Proceeds from this event provide the primary funding for the Club’s extensive scholarship, awards, internship and grants (SAIG) programs.  The SAIG Committee interacts with and monitors the progress of scholarship recipients, coordinates industry participation in educational seminars for students, supports intimate apparel education on the high school and college levels, and actively pursues an intimate apparel internship program in the New York area. 

The Program Committee develops informative seminars featuring guest speakers and panelists from the industry and related fields.  Held at frequent intervals, these meetings are designed to stimulate and entertain, as well as provide opportunities for career networking.  The committee also offers fun get-togethers such as the annual Holiday Party where, in the spirit of the season, clothes and toys are generously donated to the New York Foundling Home. 

Through the Charity Committee, meaningful cash donations are made in support of many worthy causes that are industry-related and/or humanitarian in nature.

Resources:

The Underfashion Club

www.UnderfashionClub.org

Follow @UnderfashionNY

Intimate Affair: The Intimate Apparel Square Club’s Annual Holiday Party for the “Rusk Kids”

19 Dec

IASC Holiday Party- Santa with the Rusk Kids

On Wednesday, December 14, 2011, the Intimate Apparel Square Club (IASC) held their annual Holiday Party at Horizon House at NYU Langone Medical Center’s Rusk Institute of Rehabilitation Medicine.  The Holiday Party is an annual event and has become one of the highlights of the year.  Members of IASC celebrate by visiting with the children that are hospitalized at the Rusk Institute, “Santa Claus” pays a visit and distributes gifts to the children, food is provided and a DJ plays favorite tunes to the delight of the guests and the Kids at Rusk. 

Prior to the party at Horizon House, a small group of club members are invited to join “Santa Claus” upstairs to visit with those children that are unable to come down to the facilities’ gathering space.  Visiting with the Kids at Rusk is one of the most important missions of IASC.  Unlike most non-profit organizations, the members of IASC are actively involved in the lives of those they support.  This is one of the reasons I joined the organization and champion its mission.  I was truly touched by the outpouring of love and generosity I witnessed at Wednesday’s Intimate Affair.  The IASC only has a few dozen members, but each one is dedicated to the club’s work.  As club member Roslyn Harte always says, “We’re small, but mighty!”  The members of the club give tirelessly to promote the club’s work and, most importantly, they lift the spirits of the children they help by participating in the activities at Rusk Institute.  Since 1983, the IASC has donated $5 Million to Rusk. 

Moira Nelson with Bra-lebrity Jene Luciani

The Intimate Affair at Rusk Institute was followed by a dinner at Trattoria Alba on 34th Street in NYC.  Club members gathered together to celebrate the season, awards were presented, and funds raised at the H.U.G. Award Gala on November 2, 2011 were presented to Dr. Steven R. Flanagan, chair of the Rusk Institute of Rehabilitation Medicine and Marianne Hardart, head of recreational therapy at Rusk.  The program began with a welcome from club president Norma Reinhardt Mascarotti.  She turned the podium over to longtime club member, Barry Ross, who presented the Al Jaffin Award to board member Gary Hughes.  The Al Jaffin Award was created over twenty years ago to honor individuals who have made a significant contribution to the IASC.  When presenting the award, Barry Ross said of Gary Hughes, “If you can count Gary Hughes as your friend, you are very fortunate.”  Gary graciously accepted the award and thanked club president Norma Reinhardt Mascarotti, Dr. Flanagan of the Rusk Institute, IASC members and family and friends.  Gary said that next month will mark fifty years that he’s been in the lace business.  Over the years he has been honored with several awards.  But he said that none have been as rewarding as receiving the Al Jaffin Award.  Gary Hughes has been a member of the IASC for twenty-eight years.  And he has performed the role of “Santa Claus” at the Holiday Party at Rusk Institute for as far back as I can remember.  His devotion to the club is admirable.  This award is truly well-deserved. 

Barry Ross presenting the Al Jaffin Award to Gary Hughes

For the first time, the club presented a special award at the annual Holiday Dinner.  This award was presented to Wacoal America president and CEO, Richard C. Murray.  After twenty-four years at Wacoal, Mr. Murray is retiring from his post and is being appointed as vice chairman of Wacoal’s U.S. unit effective March 31, 2012.  Club member Victor Vega, also of Wacoal America, presented the award to Richard C. Murray for his support of the IASC and the H.U.G. Award over the years.  This first time special award read “Thank You for Helping Us Give.”  Victor Vega commented that although Richard is retiring as Wacoal America’s president and CEO, he is not leaving us.  He will still be with us in the industry and in the club.  Upon receiving his award, Richard C. Murray commented that he has been fortunate to have worked at Wacoal and in such a great industry that has an organization like this (IASC.)  He said that he (and Wacoal) will continue to support and participate in this great organization. 

Victor Vega presenting the first time special award to Richard C. Murray

The program ended with the presentation of funds to the Rusk Institute of Rehabilitation Medicine.  Club president Norma Reinhardt Mascarotti presented the check to Dr. Flanagan and Marianne Hardart, head of recreational therapy.  Funds will be used for programs at Rusk including pediatric research, children’s equipment, special instruments, art therapy and music therapy.  Dr. Flanagan said that he’s honored to have the IASC as part of the Rusk family.

Also, the new officers of the Intimate Apparel Square Club were appointed for the year 2012.  The new slate of officers includes Norma Reinhardt Mascarotti, Michael De Prisco, Clelia Parisi, Gary Hughes and Adam Masry.

Club President Norma Reinhardt Mascarotti and Jene Luciani

The Intimate Apparel Square Club is continually looking for new members to help “contribute to the triumph of the human spirit.”  Membership is not limited to persons working in the intimate apparel industry.  Interested individuals are welcome to contact me for more information about joining the club.

And, I’m sad to report that we recently lost our longest living club member, Joe Ferrara.  Joe joined IASC in 1955 just shortly after the club was founded and has been an active member ever since.  He will be missed by all those who knew him and the many lives he touched over the years through his contributions to the Intimate Apparel Square Club.

About The Intimate Apparel Square Club and the H.U.G. Award

The Intimate Apparel Square Club’s annual fundraiser was renamed the H.U.G. (Help Us Give) Award in 1998 and is presented to well-respected, high-profile companies, organizations and individuals at the IASC’s annual gala fundraiser in support of pediatric rehabilitation.  The IASC was founded in1955 with the mission of uniting professionals in intimate apparel and related industries as a charitable organization and to participate in activities that will reflect positively on the membership and the industry at large.  The membership includes management executives, designers and salespeople, among other professionals.  Initially focused on charities for the blind and the elderly, the IASC broadened its scope over the years and today supports a variety of charitable organizations, with pediatric rehabilitation and treatment at Rusk and other programs at NYU Langone Medical Center being the primary beneficiary of its fundraising activities.

Resources:

Intimate Apparel Square Club and the H.U.G. Award

www.TheHugAward.org

NYU Langone Medical Center’s Rusk Institute of Rehabilitation Medicine

www.Rusk.Med.NYU.edu

Intimate Affair: The Underfashion Club’s Annual Holiday Party

12 Dec

The Underfashion Club held their annual Holiday Party at the National Arts Club on NYC’s Gramercy Park on Tuesday, December 6, 2011.  The annual Intimate Affair brings together professionals in the intimate apparel industry and related fields for a festive holiday event replete with cocktails, dinner and dancing.  The event included a “whimsical” holiday-themed design contest.  And guests were invited to bring gifts of clothing or toys for children (from infant to teen) which were then donated to the non-profit New York Foundling Home, an organization dedicated to supporting abandoned and neglected children. 

Walter Costello, president of The Underfashion Club

The Intimate Affair began with a lively cocktail hour which allowed guests the opportunity to mingle and network with fellow club members.  Club president Walter Costello then welcomed guests and made a few remarks including an announcement of the 2012 Femmy Gala Award honorees– Century 21 Department Stores, Fruit of the Loom and Top Form Brassiere Manufacturing Company, Ltd.  The Innovation Award will be presented to Penn Asia Company Limited and the Lifetime Achievement Award will be presented to longtime Underfashion Club member Victor Vega of Wacoal America.  The 2012 Femmy Gala will be held at Cipriani on 42nd Street on Tuesday, January 31, 2012.

After Walter made his remarks, club board member and co-chairman of the charity committee, Michael Floru, announced that the club would be making donations to New York City’s Meals on Wheels, St. Francis Friends of the Poor and the New York Foundling Home.  It has become a tradition for the club to disperse funds to three designated charities at the annual holiday soiree. 

Andrea Greer from Maidenform with her Winners

At this year’s event, the design contest received an assortment of unusual entries!  The contest judges Ellen Lewis of Lingerie Briefs and Colette Wong, chair of fashion design at NYC’s Fashion Institute of Technology, selected two entries as first and second prize winners.  The first prize was awarded to Andrea Greer of Maidenform for her Rudolf the Red-Nosed Reindeer Bra which earned her a free ticket to the 2012 Femmy Gala.  And, the second prize was also awarded to Andrea Greer for her red and white Snowflake Bra.  This entry earned her a year’s membership in the Underfashion Club.  Congrats Andrea!  What a surprise to have the top two entries submitted by the same person!

The highlight of the Intimate Affair was the raffle prize.  All guests received a raffle ticket upon entrance to the event.  The guests gathered in anticipation of winning the grand prize- a trip to Paris in July including round-trip airfare, three nights hotel stay and entrance into the Mode City and Interfiliere trade shows.  This prize was generously donated to the club by Eurovet, the international organizer of trade shows for the intimate apparel and swimwear industries.  The lucky winner was intimate apparel industry professional Vanessa Martin.

Guests at last week’s Holiday Intimate Affair included club president Walter Costello and board members Roslyn Harte, Victor Vega, Deborah Long-Gedney, Karen Bromley, Steve Chernoff, Gary Hughes, Kenneth Natori, Lance Whitaker, Michael Floru among others.  Numerous other professionals attended the event such as Tim Regan, Don Allen, Richard Murray, Alice Paparatto, Stacey Siokas, Michael Drescher, Heidi Lehmann, Peter Coppola, Tyler Lee, Lisa Alvarez, Lysa Villeneuve, Susan Buchanan Malinowski, Mimi Patel, Colette Wong, Laurence Teinturier, Jean-Luc Teinturier, Lindsay Petersen, Ellen Lewis and dozens more.  Media professionals included Karyn Monget from WWD, Mozz Manzoor and Libby Dowd from The Lingerie Journal and Ted Vayos from Body Magazine.

About the Underfashion Club

It is the mission of the Underfashion Club to raise funds and expend energy to safeguard the present and future health of the intimate apparel industry by supporting education of new talent, attracting this talent to careers in Intimate Apparel and to act as good citizens in the local community within which the industry exists. 

The club’s Femmy Award Gala is the most prestigious event of the Intimate Apparel Industry.  The annual Femmy Gala is held in recognition of outstanding executives for exceptional achievements.  Proceeds from this event provide the primary funding for the Club’s extensive scholarship, awards, internship and grants (SAIG) programs.  The SAIG Committee interacts with and monitors the progress of scholarship recipients, coordinates industry participation in educational seminars for students, supports intimate apparel education on the high school and college levels, and actively pursues an intimate apparel internship program in the New York area. 

The Program Committee develops informative seminars featuring guest speakers and panelists from the industry and related fields.  Held at frequent intervals, these meetings are designed to stimulate and entertain, as well as provide opportunities for career networking.  The committee also offers fun get-togethers such as the annual Holiday Party where, in the spirit of the season, clothes and toys are generously donated to the New York Foundling Home. 

Through the Charity Committee, meaningful cash donations are made in support of many worthy causes that are industry-related and/or humanitarian in nature.

Resources:

The Underfashion Club

www.UnderfashionClub.org

Follow @UnderfashionNY

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