August 19, 2003
The Washington Post yesterday profiled fashion designer Kenneth Cole, who for 20 years has promoted his "social agenda" -- including support of AIDS education and abortion rights -- through advertisements for his products. AIDS and the homeless were the first two issues Cole, who is also the vice-chair of the American Foundation for AIDS Research, focused on in his ads; Cole ran his first AIDS-related advertisement in 1986. An advertisement that first ran in 1987 pictured a single condom and said, "Our shoes aren't the only thing we encourage you to wear." According to the Post, Cole's political commentary "has become the only thing that clearly distinguishes his company from competitors" (Givhan, Washington Post, 8/18).
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