Nominations for Rivet 50, the annual index of the most influential people in the denim industry, begins today and will run through May 23. In its fifth year, the index will recognize individuals across five categories: design, influencers, leadership, sustainability and supply chain. I urge each of you to take some time to nominate the people you see igniting change and excitement in their area of expertise.
I would also like to give a special thank you to Coterie, Project and Cotton Incorporated for their support.
When we launched Rivet 50 in 2018, I joked that I wanted to maintain this index until we reached 501 honorees, with No. 501 being some special kind of recognition. But five years and a pandemic later and it doesn’t seem too out of reach, and it’s been an honor to see how the industry participates and responds to the list each year. On a personal note, I get a thrill each time I see Rivet 50 mentioned on honorees’ LinkedIn profiles, or in company press releases and media kits because it shows that Rivet 50 means something special. It’s validation coming from the industry, and we all know well that the denim biz is a tough nut to crack.
And that is why I want to say to anyone who may be under the impression that Rivet 50 is a “pay for play” gimmick, think again. The list was never intended to be an ego stroke, nor will it ever be as long as I’m clicking away at the keyboard. The B2B media world is inundated with honors and awards that require companies to pay applications fees just to be considered. Others are being underwritten by companies with their own agenda. We’ve all seen them.
Rivet has relied on the industry to nominate and vote for individuals since 2019. To be totally transparent, we quickly learned in 2018 when we created the initial list based on a few opinions that the denim industry will let you know when you get it right and when you don’t. And it is for this reason why we decided to turn Rivet 50 into a year-long program with nomination and voting phases. Therefore, our sponsors are generally agnostic without loyalty to just one brand or company. In general, they are companies and organizations that work with a large roster of players across the supply chain, and they sponsor Rivet 50 as a symbol of support.
It is my impression that this is also why the individuals who make the Rivet 50 list each year are often the people seen speaking at events (or on webinars more recently), presenting collections at trade shows and serving as the face and voice of their company. They are in the public and on the minds of their peers.
This year, however, I would like to see more people who work behind the scenes earn their place on the Rivet 50, as I’m sure many of you feel the same. Let’s shine the spotlight on the individuals hard at work in R&D labs, the innovative minds that are transforming retail and the influencers who are inspiring consumers to be accountable for their purchases. It’s a big blue world—let’s share the love.
Nominate and then vote. You are the eyes and ears of Rivet 50.
Click here to nominate.