Serena Williams Becomes First Athlete to Receive CFDA’s Fashion Icon Award

by Joseph Omoniyi
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Tennis legend Serena Williams is set to receive the prestigious Fashion Icon award at the 2023 CFDA Fashion Awards. This accolade makes her the first athlete to be honored with this esteemed distinction by the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA). Past recipients of this award include iconic figures such as Beyoncé, Naomi Campbell, Lenny Kravitz, Zendaya, Jennifer Lopez, Franca Sozzani, Pharrell Williams, and Rihanna.

Having claimed an impressive 23 Grand Slam titles, Serena Williams is widely celebrated as one of the most accomplished tennis players in the history of the sport. However, her influence extends far beyond the tennis court, making her an influential figure in the world of fashion.

Expressing her excitement about the honor, Serena Williams stated, “Ever since I was a little girl, I’ve used fashion as an outlet to express myself. Fashion gave me the confidence to step on the court and own who I was, and where I knew I was going.”

Her journey through the fashion world has been extraordinary, from launching her own brand “S by Serena” to venturing into jewelry design. Serena has shown a deep commitment to inclusivity in fashion, believing that it is for everyone, irrespective of size, race, or income. Through her career, she has collaborated with established designers and emerging talents, allowing her style to evolve with her life experiences.

Not only has Serena dominated tennis courts, but she has also been a pioneer in challenging conventions regarding on-court attire. From her now-iconic bodysuit clash at Roland Garros to her Virgil Abloh-designed tutu-inspired dress at the US Open, Serena Williams has been at the forefront of merging sports and fashion.

The CFDA Chairman, Thom Browne, commended Serena’s impact, stating, “Serena is one of the most inspiring people in the world… A true individual. She is an icon of the sports world… representing greatness on the highest level… A perfect combination of our worlds… the ultimate example of individuality in everything she does… Serena is a true fashion icon.”

The award ceremony is scheduled to take place at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City on November 6, 2023. Actress Sarah Jessica Parker will host the event, which promises to be a celebration of Serena Williams’ groundbreaking influence in the world of both sports and fashion.

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