Academic journal article Human Ecology

ONE UNIVERSITY: Evan Cagner '95 Gives CIFI Students a Boost

Academic journal article Human Ecology

ONE UNIVERSITY: Evan Cagner '95 Gives CIFI Students a Boost

Article excerpt

Fashion students are getting a big boost from a seemingly unlikely source: Evan Cagner '95, who earned his bachelor's from Cornell in economics with a minor in computer science.

Cagner and his wife Michele established the Evan Cagner and Michele Cagner Fund to support the Careers in the Fashion Industry (CIFI), a student-run organization that helps cultivate relationships and make connections between fashion students and industry professionals. And though his degree is from the College of Arts and Sciences, he's been working in the fashion industry for the past 16 years.

Cagner is the president and CEO of Synclaire Brands, which specializes in children's fashion footwear. After graduating from Cornell, he worked in the insurance, apparel and entertainment industries, where his work dealt primarily with computer systems and technology. The combination of his education and his work experience gave him the tools for success at Synclaire.

"I could sit with people on the business side and understand what the objectives were, and then I either knew or knew how to figure out what the right types of technology were to bring in for the solution," Cagner said of his early employment. "So when I came here to our footwear company, for about the first two years, all I did was really kind of move around into all the different areas of the company to see how we were doing, what we were doing. With that information, I built a business operating system that we still use today."

Like many alumni, Cagner runs into other Cornellians through the years, but it was a chance encounter at a recent industry event that prompted his gift to CIFI. He'd been giving some thought to how he could give back, but hadn't settled on an exact plan. …

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