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Friday, February 23, 2024

Fashion and Philanthropy – How One Woman is Making a Difference

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In a world often dominated by industry giants and gender biases, there are stories that shine through, breaking barriers and creating new narratives. The CEO and founder of Elite Garment Distro, Kenya Roberson, is a dynamic and determined entrepreneur, and a beacon of empowerment, authenticity, and pioneer for change in the toxic world of fast fashion. 

Roberson’s journey began in the clothing retail industry at a young age. Her first job was at the renowned Herve Leger when she was just 19 years old. Later, she found herself working for Max Azria in the world of fashion, styling and selling dresses of all varieties. During this period, she had the opportunity to meet numerous industry leaders, an experience that would prove invaluable in her future endeavors.

A Leap into the Resale Industry

Roberson’s interest in the resale industry ignited during her time in Los Angeles. While working at Herve Leger, she started buying wholesale items and reselling them, setting the stage for her future in the world of liquidation. When asked about what drew her to this field, Roberson shared, “I loved the ability to buy something and flip it for more. The brand side of things was never really my calling. It was always liquidation. I feel like it was meant for me.”

Despite her success in liquidation, Roberson never lost her desire to work with high-end brands. Her experience in the LA fashion industry, surrounded by designers and trendsetters, kept her passion for fashion alive. She reminisced, “I was always really into fashion. I was always into social media, dressing up, and having outlandish outfits when I was younger.”In a unique twist, Roberson decided to merge her passion for fashion with her thriving liquidation business. She sought to incorporate luxury brands into her niche, a concept relatively unexplored at the time. Roberson noted, “I don’t know any other companies that are doing it.” This bold move would set her apart in the industry.

Balancing Risk and Reward

Starting her own business was not without its challenges, and one of the most valuable lessons Roberson learned was the importance of balancing risk. She emphasized, “Knowing when to risk and when to hold back” was crucial in her entrepreneurial journey. Intuition played a significant role in this decision-making process, a skill she developed over the years and one she attributes much of her success to.

Redefining Success Through Philanthropy

Roberson’s commitment to philanthropy was not a newfound passion but a lifelong one. From beach cleanups to feeding the homeless, Roberson has always been involved in giving back to her community. In her business, she found a unique opportunity to make a positive impact on a larger scale. By rescuing and repurposing merchandise from factories and fast fashion brands, she aimed to contribute to an eco-friendlier world. “We’re making the world more eco-friendly just through what we do,” Roberson states.

Breaking Gender Barriers

The journey through a male-dominated industry is always bound to throw up challenges for women courageous enough to challenge the status-quo. Roberson recalls an incident where a client from another country disrespected her during a business deal for the simple fact that she was a woman. “I’m one of the only female liquidation business owners in the country,” she noted. Instances like these have only fueled her determination to succeed and challenge stereotypes.

Roberson’s journey from a young girl in the fashion industry to a thriving entrepreneur with a commitment to philanthropy showcases what can be achieved through determination and vision. As she continues to scale her business and make a positive impact on the world, Roberson stands as an inspiring example for all those who dare to dream and break free from societal constraints.

In closing, Roberson leaves us with a powerful message: “Women’s empowerment is like us finally being able to step into the world independently and respected equally. I think it’s still important that we continue to strive for more…making sure that women are respected just as much as men are.” Her story is a reminder that we all have the potential to create change and redefine success on our own terms.

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Annelise Sylta
Annelise Sylta
Annelise Sylta is a distinguished figure in the digital marketing and PR industry. After earning her MBA from FIDM, she solidified her educational foundation, paving the way for her professional endeavors.Since she was invited as a contributor on Wild mag, Anne has continuously inspired readers with her exemplary leadership skills, profound marketing know-how, and an unwavering passion for her dreams. Her narrative resonates deeply with the core values of Wild Mag. In Los Angeles, she has carved a niche for herself, excelling as the Creative Director at Deviate Agency and the Director of Operations at SomeFuse. Her rise to these important roles in a mere two years speaks volumes about her capabilities and ambition. Anne's approach to business is anchored in her unwavering commitment to integrity. She upholds the principle that genuine honesty is the bedrock of trusting and respected professional bonds.Supported by her natural intuition, Anne effortlessly navigates the intricate pathways of her industry. Through her contributions and journey, Anne serves as an embodiment of Wild Mag's ethos, showing readers that with the right blend of passion, integrity, and knowledge, even the wildest dreams are within reach.

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