Sunday, November 30, 2008

DC Designer Lenny Yorke Leaves Beautiful Legacy

While vacationing in Nevada, I received news that Lenny Yorke, a prominent fashion designer in the local fashion and African American community, had passed unexpectedly.

I had the fortune of working with Lenny on several local fashion shows, the most recent being a charity fashion show to raise awareness on human trafficking. His energy was not to be mistaken for the chaotic energy that ensued behind the scenes. He brought the kind of energy that attracts passion, commitment, and enthusiasm for the creative arts.

In our brief acquaintance, I observed a gentle soul on the quest to bridge contrasting perspectives so eloquently portrayed through his designs – exaggerated hem lengths, opposing colors, and complex shapes. To me, his muse was a worldly woman who dared to be different in a time when being different was not always welcomed with open arms.

In an industry that has the tendency to draw lines, Lenny crossed him with his warm personality and creative ingenuity. He leaves behind an invaluable lesson: dream and dream big.

Thank you, Lenny.

A tribute to Lenny Yorke will be held on Sunday, Dec 14 from 2-6 pm at The Eubie Blake National Jazz Institute and Cultural Center in Baltimore, MD. The address is 847 North Howard Street, Baltimore MD 21201. If you are able to attend, please RSVP with Larry Allen at 215-817-4499 or