Ralph Lauren is named an honorary knight
Add an honorary knighthood to designer Ralph Lauren's already lengthy list of titles.
The American fashion designer has been named honorary Knight Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire, joining a very illustrious club of very famous non-Brits.
As he does not have a British passport, Lauren cannot use the moniker of Sir, but instead may affix KBE to his name. Ralph joins such hallowed non-UK company as Bono, Bill Gates, Steven Spielberg, and Michael Bloomberg. Lauren KBE expects to receive his new insignia next year from a representative of Queen Elizabeth II.
Lauren is the first ever American fashion designer to be recognized with an honorary knighthood. Other notable American recipients of an honorary UK knighthoods include former presidents Dwight D. Eisenhower, Ronald Reagan, and George H.W. Bush.
In Britain, fashion luminaries such as Paul Smith, Hardy Amies and Norman Hartnell have all been knighted by the current monarch for services to fashion.
All British honors are awarded on merit, and honorary awards are conferred by The Queen on the advice of the Foreign and Commonwealth Secretary. The Most Excellent Order of the British Empire was founded in 1917.
Back in 2010, Ralph received the Chevalier de la Légion d’Honneur in Paris in recognition of his contributions as a designer, business leader and philanthropist in the fight against cancer. That honor was presented to him in Paris by Nicolas Sarkozy. He has also received the keys to the city of New York; and multiple awards from the Council of Fashion Designers in New York and the British Fashion Council in London.
Without question America’s single most influential designer, Lauren celebrated his 50th anniversary show in September in Central Park attended by everyone from Hillary Clinton and Oprah Winfrey to Bruce Springsteen and Tony Bennett.
That night, reflecting on his remarkable career, Lauren told FashionNetwork.com: “I never had any master plan. I just knew I had to work hard. I wanted to do my own thing and make a living so I could have a family. That’s all. I didn’t have a master plan. I was lucky. I am modest but arrogant. Maybe make that not arrogant, but self-confident.”
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