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Edward Enninful Makes History With European 'Vogue' Editor Role

Edward Enninful

Announced today, Edward Enninful is now Vogue's European editorial director. The move comes after the longtime stylist was named the editor in chief of British Vogue in April 2017. He will keep that role as he now will also oversee editions of the title in France, Italy, Germany, and Spain — Enninful is the first to fill the European editorial director position. The move, which cements him as one of the most powerful gay men in fashion and media globally, comes amid a complete restructure of Condé Nast's global editorial leadership structure.

Anna Wintour will now be Condé Nast's global chief content officer, the first person to fill this role. She will hold it in tandem with a slew of other titles: Vogue's global editorial director (meaning she will remain senior to Enninful), editor in chief of American Vogue, and U.S. artistic director of Condé Nast. Other publications at Condé Nast will assume similar structures with global editorial director roles with Amy Astley heading up Architectural Digest, Will Welch heading up GQ, among others.

Enninful's ascent is a part of a historic career as a Black, gay man in the fashion media business. He came on to the radar of many outside of the business with his cameo appearances in The September Issue. But he was making waves prior to them — he notably was the youngest ever to be named editor of a major international fashion magazine when he became the fashion director of i-D at 18. He later helped to inform the look of W magazine as its Creative Fashion Editor. His work at Vogue Italia was also lauded, particularly with the "Black Issue" which exclusively featured Black models. That project sold out in 72 hours, prompting Condé Nast to print an additional run. Since taking over British Vogue, he is the only Black editor in chief at Vogue, he has continued making history with covers. 

"Edward has been responsible for the resurgence of British Vogue and a big part of the success of our business in the U.K.," a release stated.

Under his tenure, British Vogue has changed. The much-anticipated September issue, which is typically a fashion-heavy issue, has turned to activism, spotlighting the agents of change in culture. He has also put an eye toward diversity: racial, body type, age, and more. In September, Time named him the most important Black man in the global fashion landscape, but he can not be far off from the most important man period.

Enninful's ascent isn't unprecedented though. Many point to 2020 Out100 honoree Andre Leon Talley as an important first, given that Talley once functioned as Artistic Director to American Vogue, preceding Enninful's success.

In November, Naomi Campbell honored Enninful at the Native Son Award. That event honors Black queer men. 

RELATED | Fashion Icon André Leon Talley Still Has Something to Say

Tags: Media, Fashion

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