Kerby Jean-Raymond is assuming greater responsibility at Reebok.
The New York City-based designer and founder of Pyer Moss has been named vice president, creative direction for the sports brand. In this role, he will provide creative leadership and work closely with Reebok’s product, global marketing and development organizations to ensure consistency across all areas.
Jean-Raymond will also be at the forefront of the brand’s Product With Purpose program, which is part of its commitment to United Against Racism. The program will launch in 2021 and the first products by Jean-Raymond will release in 2022. In addition, he will serve on the Reebok senior leadership team and report to president Matt O’Toole.
“I am thrilled to be evolving my role at Reebok and joining the leadership team as the head of creative direction,” Jean-Raymond said in a statement. “I welcome this opportunity to help invigorate the brand with new ideas, while also focusing on instilling a sense of social purpose into our work.”
In an Instagram post on Wednesday, Jean-Raymond expanded on the statement: “I started working with Reebok in 2017 after meeting Damion Presson. I was brought in to support the launch of a shoe at the time called the ‘DMX Fusion.’ We made our own version called the Experiment 1 and were asked to make some apparel to support one of their retail partners at a mass market price point. I’m not really too good at following rules, so I didn’t pretend to try.
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“Instead we made a series of collections we believed in, incorporated our collaboration into our runways and created content that spoke to what we were already doing at Pyer Moss. Campaign 1, Seven Mothers (Campaign 2) and a series of videos called ‘Imma Ball Anyway’ were some of my favorites. Many of these projects were a result of us seeing how far we could go before someone yelled ‘uncle.’
“No one did, and I was grateful.
“Today, that collaboration will evolve. Pyer Moss is not just a partner of Reebok, but I am now the creative director, globally. Or technically…vice president, creative direction. To my Reebok fam, there’s a lot of work to do. Can our mind-sets collectively evolve to serve the future? Are we inclusive enough? Are we bold enough? Are we challenging tradition enough? Are we ready to unlearn? It’s going to be difficult. I’m ready though.”
Reebok and Jean-Raymond have worked together for four years on the Reebok by Pyer Moss collection, a popular footwear line that, Jean-Raymond said in November 2019, sells out in minutes. Their work together led to Jean-Raymond winning Footwear News’ 2018 Collaboration of the Year Award and the 2019 FNAA Person of the Year Award. He recently took home the CFDA Award for Menswear Designer of the Year and Designer of the Year from Harlem Fashion Row this year.
Last year, he was named artistic director of Reebok Studies, a new division created to foster emerging talent, and this year launched with Kering, Your Friends in New York, a fashion, culture, wellness and philanthropy platform to foster the next generation of innovators.
“Kerby is a fashion visionary with a bold approach who has established himself as a leader and a passionate activist,” O’Toole said. “We are incredibly excited about the impact he will have on Reebok from a design and brand purpose perspective and for him to bring his unique voice and direction to the Reebok brand more broadly. This is certainly a big opportunity for both Reebok and for Kerby — he understands the value of our rich heritage and iconic silhouettes and how he can build on that and take Reebok in an exciting and evolved direction.”
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