Culture and conscience underlie the award-winning business model of AAS Fashion Design alumna Autumn Adeigbo. The Nigerian-American designer’s womenswear company began as a seven-piece collection and donated 5 percent of sales to West African women’s
micro-entrepreneurship programs. Then, in 2014, Adeigbo piloted a Ghanaian program, training women in hand beading for fair-trade wages.
year, Adeigbo began documenting her start-up journey as a Forbes contributor. That fall, she launched a new line, sourced in Nigeria and made in women-owned facilities there, paying workers 259 percent above the fair-trade wage minimum
and 298 percent above the national minimum wage.
Adeigbo has gained acclaim from sources ranging from Vogue, Marie Claire, Nylon, andEssence to MTV, BET, and the Oprah Winfrey Network. Organizations including the Global Good Fund have recognized her ethical practices, and she recently secured six-figure funding to develop her business in partnership with women throughout Africa and in India and the United States.
"My goal is to create a global lifestyle brand founded on ethical fashion, sustainability, and women supporting women," says Adeigbo.