Rina Bovrisse (born 1974, Japan) is a fashion executive, designer and activist. Bovrisse is Chanel alumnus and Parsons School of Design graduate, known for her activism, "Prada Vs The UN" by Vogue. She is recognized in high-profile cases and activism on socially influential brands. She is the first female to counter report a fashion case to the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights to make sexual harassment in the workplace illegal in Japan. In 2011, Bovrisse founded Chateau School, a preschool that offers "World Diplomacy Program" and plans to expand the school globally, so that small children can travel around the world. Bovrisse was announced in 2016 to run for the Governor of Tokyo in 2020.
- 1 Early life
- 2 Career
- 3 Media
- 4 Activism
- 4.1 United Nations
- 4.2 American Chamber of Commerce
- 4.3 Asian Transnational Corporations Monitoring Network
- 4.4 Hong Kong Legislative Council
- 4.5 Hong Kong University
- 4.6 TED
- 4.7 Change.org
- 5 Politics
- 6 Personal life
- 7 References
In 1990, she moved to New York City during high school. In 1992, she lived to Paris and attended American University of Paris, Parsons Paris and University of Paris. She also lived in London for Central Saint Martins in Fashion Design. In 1998, she graduated with BBA in Design Marketing from Parsons School of Design in New York City. In 2009, she was accepted to American University of Paris to finish her master's degree, but while traveling to Paris, a friend at Prada in New York recommended a job at Prada Japan, which Bovrisse took instead.
Her fashion career started during her teen years in the early 1990s in Paris. She opened her small purchasing office and worked as liaison for shops carrying Vivienne Westwood and Martin Margiela products. She appeared at events at Les Bains Douches in Paris. She started working in the showroom of Comme des Garçons in New York City. After graduating from Parsons School of Design, she continued working at Comme des Garçons executive office. She was recruited to Prada Marketing in New York City and represented Prada and Miu Miu runway collections in Milan showroom. In 2001, she began working at Chanel headquarters in New York City.
In 2011, Bovrisse designed a prestigious preschool, Chateau School offering a diverse and international experience. In 2012, the school's curriculum was featured on one of Japan's national TV stations, cited as a successful exponent of “Advanced Early Education”. In 2015, Fuji Television launched an exclusive 17 minutes documentary of Chateau School for its highly academic program. Bovrisse’s preschool, Chateau School has been featured on Vogue, Numero, Elle, WWD, Figaro and many fashion magazines.
Bovrisse has been the subject of tabloid and media for her fashion activism.
In April 2010, Elle France selected Bovrisse as "The Woman Of The Week". In September 2010, Bloomberg featured Bovrisse as "Heroine of the Global Economy". In January 2011, she was featured as "Female Icon Of The Year" alongside Michelle Obama and Carla Bruni in a Spanish newspaper Correio da Manhã. On May 28, 2013, Vogue launched a news, "Prada Vs The UN" and became the most shared article.
On August 6, 2013, Bovrisse was interviewed by CBS Los Angeles news by CBS TV reporter, Andrea Fujii and commented, "I want to eliminate any discrimination and harassment in the fashion industry because it’s not beautiful".
On December 2, 2013, Bovrisse appeared on live American TV show, D.N.A. on Fusion (TV channel) owned by Disney–ABC Television Group and Univision Communications. The show features news, lifestyle, pop culture, and entertainment by anchor Derrick Ashong, host of Oprah Radio by Oprah Winfrey. Bovrisse was a guest speaker for Fashion Week Special and commented, "No one should feel uncomfortable about themselves. How you present yourself is who you are, what you wear and how you look is who you are. Everyone should be comfortable with that."
Bovrisse is a globally respected activist devoted for her corporate social responsibility activism towards socially influential brands. She offers differing approaches to campaigning through worldwide network of attorneys and international NGO. She is specialized in branding social campaigns on a global scale.
In 2012, Tokyo Court female judge Reiko Morioka dismissed Bovrisse's Prada Gender Discrimination Case, said: discrimination is "acceptable for a luxury fashion label and that a well-compensated female employee should be able to withstand a certain level of harassment." Prada counter-sued for alleged defamation. The UN has backed Bovrisse and The UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights has called for Japan's State party to introduce new regulations that would make sexual harassment in the workplace illegal. The Committee also recommended that the State party ensure that victims can lodge complaints without fear of retaliation.
In 2013, Bovrisse pointed out at Geneva Press Club that Japan is the 3rd largest economy of the world and 42% of the nation's workers being females, but gender equality was ranked 101st out of 135 countries measured in 2012. In 2016, Japan's ranking remained 101st behind Gambia and Tajikistan is a dearth of female voices in power.
American Chamber of Commerce
In 2013, American Chamber of Commerce in Japan The Women in Business Committee welcomed Bovrisse as spokesperson of Global Advocate for Women in Business at Tokyo American Club.
Asian Transnational Corporations Monitoring Network
On May 8, 2012, Asian Transnational Corporations Monitoring Network sent a letter against LVMH Group in hiring Sebastian Suhl for Givenchy who was the key player of sexual harassment and discrimination case. On June 7, 2013, fifteen Hong Kong NGOs co-signed a "Statement for Press" which backed Bovrisse to support improve gender equality and empowering women around the world.
Hong Kong Legislative Council
In May 2011, Bovrisse was invited to The Hong Kong Legislative Council to meet with the council members and lawmakers. Bovrisse met with the Chairwoman of the Democratic Party of Hong Kong, Emily Lau, and the General Secretary of the Hong Kong Confederation of Trade Unions, Lee Cheuk-yan, on IPO regulations. Hong Kong Stock Exchange IPO regulation was later updated to include compliance monitoring before approved for IPO.
Hong Kong University
In October 2013, Bovrisse presented to advocate the promotion of UN Women organized by the Center for Comparative and Public Law (CCPL) of the University of Hong Kong, the Hong Kong Women's Coalition on Equal Opportunities and the Women’s Studies Research Centre (WSRC), joined by Emily Lau and Hong Kong NGOs.
Bovrisse has lectured on gender equality and positive action at law schools, universities, fashion schools and TED.
In April–August 2013, a Change.org petition calling for Prada to drop its countersuit against Bovrisse collected over 222,000 signatures.
On June 15, 2016, Bovrisse was announced she would run for the Governor of Tokyo in 2020. Bovrisse said, "I keep hearing about how Japan is championing women, making us shine, creating new opportunities, but this is all fiction, all talk. For women to enjoy real change, we need to do the jobs that men think are only for them. That's why I'm running. Once you are involved in our political system, you get brainwashed and don't see the problems because you lack real world experience, wages are weak and income inequality is rising, but these men have no idea. This is the main reason things never change in Japan."
Bovrisse is a single mother, having divorced a Frenchman from whom she got her surname. She has one son, French-American model and singer. He appeared on fashion shows, TV commercials and concerts in Tokyo.
- Pesek 2016.
- "Slapped Zac Posen PR Files Law Suit (Vogue.com UK)". Vogue.co.uk. 2012-11-09. Retrieved 2013-09-16.
- "Les femmes de la semaine 23/04/2010 - Elle". Elle.fr. Retrieved 2013-10-22.
- Pesek, William (2010-09-09). "Prada Wears Devil in Eyes of This ‘Ugly’ Woman: William Pesek". Bloomberg. Retrieved 2013-10-22.
- "Welcome: CHATEAU BON BON, Inc. | British Chamber of Commerce in Japan". Bccjapan.com. 2013-09-11. Retrieved 2013-10-22.
- "Ex-Prada Employee Who Accused Fashion House Of Discrimination Fights Nearly $800K Countersuit " CBS Los Angeles". Losangeles.cbslocal.com. 2013-08-06. Retrieved 2013-09-16.
- About Oprah Radio Host Derrick N. Ashong - Oprah.com
- Derrick Ashong & Oprah Winfrey - YouTube
- Ex-Prada Employee Sues the Company for Firing 'Ugly' People - Fusion
- "Rina Bovrisse, too ugly for Prada... - JAPAN". FRANCE 24. Retrieved 2013-09-16.
- "Prada Rina Bovrisse Lawsuit - UN Statement Released (Vogue.com UK)". Vogue.co.uk. 2013-05-28. Retrieved 2013-09-16.
- "The First Case in The World's Fashion History | Club suisse de la presse" (in French). 2013.pressclub.ch. 2012-09-25. Retrieved 2013-09-16.
- ACCJ | Details - Rejecting the Code of Silence: A Japanese Woman Breaks Rank to Fight for Working Women's Rights | The American Chamber of Commerce in Japan
- "Statement For Press" (PDF). Share.pdfonline.com. 2013-06-07. Retrieved 2013-10-22.
- Imogen Fox. "Prada's attempts to storm Chinese market hit by feminist protesters | Fashion". The Guardian. Retrieved 2013-09-16.
- "Hong Kong Feminists Bristle at Prada IPO - Fashion Scoops - Fashion". WWD.com. 2011-05-03. Retrieved 2013-09-16.
- "Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights - 50th session". .ohchr.org. Retrieved 2013-09-16.