In celebration of New York Fashion Week, Here is a story highlighting iconic immigrant fashion influencers who launched their careers in the United States and revolutionized the world of fashion.
Best known for his luxury wear, Bibhu Mohapatra received Fashion Institute of Technology’s Critics’ Award for Best Evening Wear Designer of the Year while still a student. Mohapatra originally moved to New York City in 1999 to study for a master’s degree in economics. Before starting his own line he worked as an assistant designer with Halston and later as a design director for the French furrier, J. Mendel.
Mohapatra earned a Masters in economics from the Jon M. Huntsman School of Business at Utah State University in 1996, then moved to New York City to enroll in the Fashion Institute of Technology. In 1997, while still at F.I.T., he was awarded Fashion Institute of Technology’s Critics’ Award for Best Evening Wear Designer of the Year.
First Lady Michelle Obama wears Bibhu Mohapatra  in August 2012.
Mohapatra has designed a collection of hand woven silks to help the traditional weavers in his home state of Orissa, in India.
Mohapatra lives and works in New York City.