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<p>Leonardo Ferragamo accepts induction into the Shannon Rodgers and Jerry Silverman School of Fashion Design and Merchandising Hall of Fame during a ceremony in the Kiva.</p>

Leonardo Ferragamo accepts induction into the Shannon Rodgers and Jerry Silverman School of Fashion Design and Merchandising Hall of Fame during a ceremony in the Kiva.

<p>Leonardo Ferragamo poses for a photo with his daughter, Martina (front, center) and fashion students in the Shannon Rodgers and Jerry Silverman School of Fashion Design and Merchandising Auditorium.</p>

Leonardo Ferragamo poses for a photo with his daughter, Martina (front, center) and fashion students in the Shannon Rodgers and Jerry Silverman School of Fashion Design and Merchandising Auditorium.

<p>Leonardo Ferragamo is introduced to President Lester A. Lefton prior to the start of a meeting in the executive offices. Also pictured are J.R. Campbell, Director of the School of Fashion, and Stanley T. Wearden, dean of the College of Communication and Information (left).</p>

Leonardo Ferragamo is introduced to President Lester A. Lefton prior to the start of a meeting in the executive offices. Also pictured are J.R. Campbell, Director of the School of Fashion, and Stanley T. Wearden, dean of the College of Communication and Information (left).

<p>Leonardo Ferragamo speaks following a ceremony in which he received an honorary doctorate from Kent State and induction into the Shannon Rodgers and Jerry Silverman School of Fashion Design and Merchandising Hall of Fame.</p>

Leonardo Ferragamo speaks following a ceremony in which he received an honorary doctorate from Kent State and induction into the Shannon Rodgers and Jerry Silverman School of Fashion Design and Merchandising Hall of Fame.

<p>Leonardo Ferragamo proudly displays his Shannon Rodgers and Jerry Silverman School of Fashion design and Merchandising Hall of Fame gift during a ceremony in the Kiva.</p>

Leonardo Ferragamo proudly displays his Shannon Rodgers and Jerry Silverman School of Fashion design and Merchandising Hall of Fame gift during a ceremony in the Kiva.

<p>Leonardo Ferragamo uses his iPhone to photograph a Katherine Hepburn display in the Kent State Fashion Museum. Also pictured are Ferragamo's daughter, Martina, his son Riccardo, and Jean Druesedow, Director of the Kent State University Museum.</p>

Leonardo Ferragamo uses his iPhone to photograph a Katherine Hepburn display in the Kent State Fashion Museum. Also pictured are Ferragamo's daughter, Martina, his son Riccardo, and Jean Druesedow, Director of the Kent State University Museum.

On April 7, fashion empire CEO Leonardo Ferragamo will receive an honorary degree from Kent State University. He also will be inducted into the university's Fashion School Hall of Fame.
On April 7, fashion empire CEO Leonardo Ferragamo will receive an honorary degree from Kent State University. He also will be inducted into the university's Fashion School Hall of Fame.
  • <p>Leonardo Ferragamo accepts induction into the Shannon Rodgers and Jerry Silverman School of Fashion Design and Merchandising Hall of Fame during a ceremony in the Kiva.</p>
  • <p>Leonardo Ferragamo poses for a photo with his daughter, Martina (front, center) and fashion students in the Shannon Rodgers and Jerry Silverman School of Fashion Design and Merchandising Auditorium.</p>
  • <p>Leonardo Ferragamo is introduced to President Lester A. Lefton prior to the start of a meeting in the executive offices. Also pictured are J.R. Campbell, Director of the School of Fashion, and Stanley T. Wearden, dean of the College of Communication and Information (left).</p>
  • <p>Leonardo Ferragamo speaks following a ceremony in which he received an honorary doctorate from Kent State and induction into the Shannon Rodgers and Jerry Silverman School of Fashion Design and Merchandising Hall of Fame.</p>
  • <p>Leonardo Ferragamo proudly displays his Shannon Rodgers and Jerry Silverman School of Fashion design and Merchandising Hall of Fame gift during a ceremony in the Kiva.</p>
  • <p>Leonardo Ferragamo uses his iPhone to photograph a Katherine Hepburn display in the Kent State Fashion Museum. Also pictured are Ferragamo's daughter, Martina, his son Riccardo, and Jean Druesedow, Director of the Kent State University Museum.</p>
  • On April 7, fashion empire CEO Leonardo Ferragamo will receive an honorary degree from Kent State University. He also will be inducted into the university's Fashion School Hall of Fame.

Kent State Bestows
Honorary Degree to
Fashion Empire CEO

University Communications & Marketing
Kent State University bestowed the honorary degree Doctor of Humane Letters to Leonardo Ferragamo, chief executive officer of Palazzo Feroni Finanziaria S.p.A., a holding company of the shoe and luxury goods dynasty Salvatore Ferragamo of Florence, Italy. The special ceremony took place on April 7 in the Kent Student Center Kiva. During the same ceremony, Ferragamo also was inducted into the university’s Shannon Rodgers and Jerry Silverman School of Fashion Design and Merchandising Hall of Fame for his internationally recognized expertise in the global merchandising of the Salvatore Ferragamo brand of women’s footwear, handbags, scarves as well as the men’s shoes and clothing line.

Ferragamo was nominated for an honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters by Kent State’s College of the Arts and the College of Communication and Information, with direct input from the Fashion School, which has a Florence program. In addition to Ferragamo’s driving force in organizing and supporting fashion trade in Florence, it was his clear leadership and vision in preserving Florentine culture and arts in Florence which attracted John R. Crawford, dean of the College of the Arts, and Stanley Wearden, dean of the College of Communication and Information, along with Fashion School Director J.R. Campbell to forward his nomination. His direct support to Kent State’s Florence campus, Palazzo dei Cerchi, has afforded many enriching, internationally based opportunities for both fashion and communication majors studying a semester in Florence.

Leonardo Ferragamo is chief executive officer of Palazzo Feroni Finanziaria S.p.A., a holding company of the shoe and luxury goods dynasty Salvatore Ferragamo of Florence, Italy. The process for awarding the degree begins with nominations from Kent State colleges and academic departments to the institution’s Citation and Recognition Committee. Nominees who receive the approval from the committee are then recommended to the Kent State Board of Trustees and Kent State President for approval.

Leonardo Ferragamo entered the family company of Salvatore Ferragamo Italia in 1975 as assistant to the technical director of production.

Since 1919, the Ferragamo Company has been world renowned for its unparalleled design and production of women’s footwear, handbags, scarves and accessories, and most of the stars of Hollywood, stage and screen appeared in designs by Ferragamo. In 1970, the Ferragamo Company began producing men’s shoes and clothing, which was driven by Leonardo Ferragamo in the 1980s.

Leonardo Ferragamo went on to create and extend the men’s wear division, beginning with footwear, then with accessories and clothing. He remained head of the sector until 1987 when he became director of the commercial activity and therefore of Europe, Asia, and subsequently South America markets. He devoted himself mainly to the development and commercialization of the Ferragamo product over those areas, after which he took on the role of chief executive officer of the Europe Asia Division.

Since the beginning of 2000, as CEO of Palazzo Feroni Finanziaria, Leonardo Ferragamo guides the diversified investments of the Ferragamo Group among which he chairs the Lungarno Hotels. He is the honorary chairman of Altagamma, the luxury goods companies association that he has chaired for nine years from 2000-2009, and the Palazzo Strozzi Partners Association whose objective is to support Florence as an important center of international art and culture. He also is adviser of Salvatore Ferragamo Italia and of Ferragamo Finanziaria, the financial holding of the group.

In May 2008, Leonardo Ferragamo received the title of Honorary Member of the Academy of Fine Arts of Florence. Kent State’s honorary degree will be the first American honorary degree received by Leonardo Ferragamo.

The induction of Leonardo Ferragamo into the Kent State Fashion School’s Hall of Fame correlates to his continued pursuance of his family’s legacy in designing and producing luxury market footwear, clothing, accessories, handbags, eyewear and timepieces worldwide. Moreover, he has contributed greatly to the development of arts and culture in Florence, Italy, and has sponsored some of the key fashion exhibitions there, including Pitti Immagine.

The Kent State Fashion School Hall of Fame includes other significant individuals, such as Oscar de la Renta, Anna Sui, Estée Lauder, Judith Leiber, Cynthia Rowley, Michael Weiss, Ralph Rucci and Kent State alumna Linda Allard.

For more information on Kent State's School of Fashion Design and Merchandising, visit www.fashionschool.kent.edu.