The Fragrance Foundation Media Connections Brunch: Bringing Together The Best Of The Industry To Celebrate Diversity And Opportunity!

The Fragrance Foundation (TFF) recently hosted an intimate gathering of about 40 industry leaders, including brand owners, designers, media, influencers and style makers to celebrate New York Fashion Week and learn the latest on #FragranceForwardTFF sweeping industry-wide initiative dedicated to advancing diversity, equity and inclusion throughout the fragrance industry, at every level.

Kathleen Hou, Francisco Costa, Linda G. Levy, Musa Jackson and Rebecca Moses attend The Fragrance Foundation Media Connections Brunch at the legendary Melba’s in Harlem.

I was lucky enough to attend this amazing brunch event at Harlem hotspot Melba’s, on Harlem’s famed Restaurant Row at Frederick Douglass Boulevard. The event was themed around the concept of Connections and everyone mixed and mingled at the tables over coffee, sweet potato pancakes, vegetable frittatas and more. It was truly a festive and dynamic atmosphere for networking, exchanging ideas and sharing insights on the latest fragrance trends. I got a tremendous amount of ideas for my holiday gift guide on luxelifenyc.com, so I was a happy camper!

Teri Johnson and Linda Levy, President Of The Fragrance Foundation had a tete a tete about (what else) fragrance before the presentation began.

Linda G. Levy, President of The Fragrance Foundation, kicked off the event and introduced brand owners Chris Collins, founder, World of Chris Collins; Teri Johnson of the Harlem Candle Company and Francisco Costa, whose award-winning beauty line Costa Brazil is heightening the standards of sustainability in the industry. Guests actually got to take home a bottle of Costa Brazil. I had never heard of it before and fell in love with it immediately! And speaking of Harlem Candle which I just mentioned above, guests got a phenomenal candle in a tin with the interesting scent name of Speakeasy, which seems to be a perfect mix of roses, tobacco and vanilla.

Francisco Costa and Kathleen Hou enjoyed the event as much as I did and it was amazing to be able to talk to Francisco about his amazing fragrance Costa Brazil and its development.

Launched in autumn 2022, #FragranceForwardTFF is now considered an industry standard-bearer in providing real-time opportunities in the areas of mentorship, recruitment and career development as well as scholarship and education. In less than a year, #FragranceForwardTFF has created the first-ever fragrance diversity scholarship program at FIT, providing $100,000 annually to deserving undergraduate and graduate students. If that was not enough, the program also launched Scents of Success, a career development workshop series at Spelman College and will roll out to other HBCUs Minority Serving Institutions.

Avril Graham, Musa Jackson and Rebecca Moses enjoyed cocktails before everyone sat down for the presentation and meal. Signature drinks at the event were Bottomless Mango Mimosas and Sexy Sangria.

#FragranceForwardTFF also presented a groundbreaking webinar on industry perspectives featuring diverse leaders from LVMH, the Phluid Project, World of Chris Collins and Givaudan. This incredible webinar had over 3,000 participants and galvanized the industry (including TFF’s 100+ members) to take–and commit–to the #FragranceForwardTFF DEI pledge that calls for a commitment to being “fragrance forward” in hiring practices, advancement opportunities, mentorship, recruitment and inclusivity. To say that I am impressed with these accomplishments is an understatement. For more information on #FragranceForwardTFF events and opportunities, go to fragrancefoundation.org.

(Photos by Rob Kim/Getty Images.)