Difficult to define, impossible to buy and instantly recognizable, style comes from deep within. You can spot it a mile away; it’s an innate quality that’s never restricted by age, gender or race. Take Kate, the Duchess of Cornwall. Despite the many sartorial protocols about what she can and cannot wear, she’s always stunning, whether she’s in a pair of jeans (as she was for her first Vogue cover) or donning a designer gown for a state dinner.
This enviable exterior is truly enhanced when the inside is as impressive as the outside. That is the reason for this article, to profile six New Orleanians who not only cut a stylish figure around town, but do it often and for the sake of the community and the philanthropic endeavors they support.
Occupation: Full time mom
Which nonprofit have you chosen to represent? New Orleans Women’s Shelter
What do you prefer to wear to nonprofit events? A simple dress with a great pair of shoes.
How would you describe your personal style? Classic with a twist
Is your significant other well dressed? His closet is significantly larger than mine, if that tells you anything! He has great taste in clothing and always looks handsome.
Where do you like to shop? I shop in a variety of different places, but locally one of my favorites is Em’s Boutique. Emily and her manager, Jill, always help me find the perfect outfit. However, the best thing to “wear” is a positive attitude, and you can’t buy that in any store!
Whose style do you most admire? My mother, Mary Lou Brogan. She always reminds me of Grace Kelly with her effortless elegance.
What are you wearing in this photo? Emilio Pucci dress with my favorite Christian Louboutin heels
Bivian “Sonny” Lee III
Occupation: Founder and President, The Son of a Saint Institute (SonOfASaint.org)
What event have you chosen to represent? The Son of a Saint fourth annual Gala, December 2
What is appropriate attire for this event? Semi-formal
How would you describe your personal style? I like things that are classic, comfortable and of good quality
Is your significant other well dressed? I assume, I can’t get past the beauty of her face.
Where do you like to shop? Locally, I’ll stop by Vegas on Magazine Streets or catch a deal at Saks’ Men’s Department or Allen Edmond.
Whose style do you most admire? Former Son of a Saint Board member, Dr. Jay Dumas. He’s always sharp.
What are you wearing in this photo? Black Hugo Boss suit, Saks Fifth Avenue tie, White Mizzen + Main Manhattan shirt and Black Allen Edmond shoes
Corey Hebert M.D.
Occupation: Physician; CEO, Community Health TV; Assistant Professor LSUHSC; and Chief Medical Editor, WDSU
What event have you chosen to represent? I am a very charitable person, so I’m always serving as a chairman or on a planning committee for so many great events. The Daughters of Charity “Keeping Our Promises” gala, The Blessed 26 “Hope for 2morrow Gala” (Ed. note: Took place June 11) and the inaugural African American Male Wellness Walk Initiative, to mention just a few this year.
What is appropriate attire for these events? I am always working at these events so my basic “workout gear” is a custom suit and signature bow tie, cufflinks and two anklets, but never socks!
How would you describe your personal style? Business Bohemian. I love mixing genres of fashion to bring diversity to the stodginess of classic American Style.
Is your significant other well dressed? Absolutely impeccably dressed.
Where do you like to shop? Luca Falcone, Brinkman’s Menswear and Brooks Brothers
Whose style do you most admire? Actor Idris Elba
What are you wearing in this photo? Bespoke two-piece windowpane plaid suit, custom French cuff shirt, shoes by Gucci, belt by Hermès and a pocket square by Etro
Occupation: Wife, mother and grandmother; civic activist-founder; and Chair Emeritus, Citizens for 1 Greater New Orleans
What event have you chosen to represent? The New Orleans Botanical Garden’s fall gala, “Magic in the Moonlight.” I have served on the board for years and I love the many opportunities the garden’s programs provide for learning
What is appropriate attire for this event? Cocktail
How would you describe your personal style? Classic, tailored clothes with accessories, as they give the finishing touch to any outfit – casual or dressy!
Is your significant other well dressed? Yes, Lou always looks great to me and he’s always dressed appropriately for the occasion, be it a gala, dinner party, meeting, fishing or working in the garden!
Where do you like to shop? Saks, Ballins, Carlisle and dress designer Yvonne Counce
Whose style do you admire most? I admire the style of a number of family and friends
What are you wearing in this photo? Jacket by Escada, dress pants by Carlisle, jeweled purse was handmade in Japan and heels by Stuart Weitzman
Age: Feeling 18 and happy to be 68!
Occupation: Community Activist and BUG (aka Best Uptown Granny)
What event have you chosen to represent? “Just Say YAYA,” which is YAYA’s annual fundraiser. This year’s theme is “YAYA Goes Gardening.” YAYA’s mission is to empower creative young people to become successful adults. We provide educational experiences in the arts and entrepreneurship to New Orleans-area children and youth, fostering and supporting their individual ambitions
What is appropriate attire for this event? Creative and fun
How would you describe your personal style? Classically tailored with an edge
Is your significant other well dressed? Always, but it really doesn’t matter because he’s so handsome!
Where do you like to shop? Carlisle, Angelique, Victoria’s and out of town.
Whose style do you most admire? Iris Apfel – need I say more?
What are you wearing in this photo? Carlisle fringed leather skirt, black knit top and belt.
Susan Read Johnson
Occupation: Wife, mother, grandmother and volunteer
What event have you chosen to represent? I am highlighting “The Historic Houses Society Gala” that benefits the Hermann-Grima + Gallier Historic Houses. The money raised from this event is used to preserve these beautiful museums and their collections for generations to come.
What is appropriate attire for the event? Cocktail
How would you describe your personal style? My style is fairly traditional. When I buy something, I keep it for years!
Is your significant other well dressed? My husband is always well dressed. His favorite style is casual.
Where do you like to shop? I like to shop at small boutiques. Two of my favorites are CK Collection and East Bay Clothiers in Fairhope, Alabama.
Whose style do you admire? I have three wonderful daughters who make me very proud. They always look great, and I really admire their unique styles.
What are you wearing in this photograph? I am wearing a Lela Rose dress that my husband gave to me last Christmas with a black pearl necklace with matching black pearl and diamond earrings