On the morning of Saturday, May 1, Suzanne Rogers announced an Instagram Story posing with former U.S. President Donald Trump at his private club, Mar-a-Lago, in Palm Beach, Fla. Given that Rogers has outlook herself as the fairy godmother of Canadian fashion, member states that community reacted immediately with denunciations, citing Trump’s lack of support for BIPOC and LGBTQ+ people. In 2016, a$ 1 million gift from The Suzanne and Edward Rogers Foundation built the Suzanne Rogers Fashion Institute at Ryerson University to support emerging designers. Last-place November, the Foundation supported another offering of$ 1 million to the SRFI. But Rogers’ post seems to have trumped, so to speak, her previous fiscal goodwill.
Here is what we know so far: A since-deleted Instagram Story from Rogers’ evening at Mar-a-Lago. Photography via Instagram.com/ suzannerogerstoronto.
Suzanne Rogers, her husband Edward and two sons dined at Mar-a-Lago on Friday and posed for a photo with Trump at the end of the evening. Rogers announced the photo with the caption, “A Special Way to End the Night! ” By midday Saturday, after anger began flowing online, Rogers made down the post.
Toronto designer Michael Zoffranieri was one of the first to express his consternation on social media, by reposting Rogers’ post, supplementing the caption, “Will Canadian fashion accept this? ”
A screen capture of the since-deleted Instagram post first shared by @ ryersonfashion. Photography via Instagram.com/ ryersonfashion.
Phones began sounding all over the city with representatives of the pattern parish articulating their disapproval on social media and encouraging others to do the same. The Ryerson School of Fashion too posted the following statement inviting “Suzanne Rogers to enter into a dialogue with our department, staff members and students to discuss the impact that Trump and his parish has had on further harming members of the fashion industry who are low income, Black, chocolate-brown, Asian, disable, Indigenous, trans, homosexual, and/ or part of other systemically marginalized communities.”
The post was later removed and replaced with a send from Ryerson University which includes the following: “We do not believe social media is the appropriate platform to adjudicate the actions of others.” It too goes on to say, “We will be respectful of differing slants, ” which does little to quell the ire, especially among those associated with the Ryerson School of Fashion.
An Instagram Story shared by Ben Barry. Photography via Instagram.com/ bendrakbarry.
Ben Barry, the Ryerson School of Fashion’s Chair and Associate Professor of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion, shot back on Instagram Stories with a meaning that the Ryerson University statement “are Ryerson’s commands not mine or our academy, ” referring to the School of Fashion.
Various observers begin questioning the coherence of Ryerson University, and whether they are motivated by the Rogers family’s deep financial contributions to the school, including the Ted Rogers School of Management.
Members of the SRFI Advisory Board begin resigning, including Hudson’s Bay Vice-President and Fashion Director Tyler Franch and communications consultant Lisa Tant.
Where things stand regarading the Suzanne Rogers Donald Trump resentment as of Sunday afternoon:
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Toronto lawyer Anjli Patel, who teaches a mode constitution course at Ryerson, writes a three-part letter to Mohamed Lachemi, president of Ryerson University, and announces it on her Instagram account, @anjlitoronto. It notes that the School of Fashion’s guiding principles are inclusion, decolonization and sustainable development issues. She helps others to write to the is chairman of the school as well.
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