In 1968, Harvard undergraduate student Katiti Kironde won Glamour magazine’s “Best Dressed College Girls” contest. That dated terminology has since been updated to “College Women of the Year.”
As part of the win, Kironde graced the cover of the August 1968 issue of Glamour College. She was the first African-American woman given the cover of a U.S. fashion magazine.
Glamour recently reconnected with Kironde for an episode of their podcast Work Wives. During the conversation with associate producer Kateri Benjamin, Kironde recalls how she personally made the white shirt featured on the cover and notes that progress has been made with regards to fashion magazines celebrating a broader spectrum of human beauty:
“We’re not where we need to be. But we’re so much farther than where we were, because, believe me, I’ve lived it… The celebration of black beauty is something that is very, very new, and has a long way to go.”
Kironde grew up in a household without a mother and credits her father’s strength as having helped her get through those early years. In the winter of 2010, Kironde was back at Harvard to teach the seminar “Intro to Fashion” after having previously worked with students from her Alma Mater through the Radcliffe Mentor Program. She forged, after her own 1979 graduation, a successful career in the fashion apparel industry.