This has been a busy year for designer Ralph Lauren. After more than 40 years at the helm of his eponymous brand, Lauren handed over the reigns to former Old Navy global president, Stefan Larsson, at the end of September.
Lauren will continue to serve as executive chairman and chief creative officer of the company. At the time of the announcement, Lauren said that he and Larsson “have a strong personal bond and share a vision for the future of Ralph Lauren. …Now, all the pieces are in place to position our business for continued growth.”
This summer, Lauren put on an adorable children’s fashion show at New York’s Central Park Zoo to coincide with the release of the movie “Pan,” the newest take on the Disney classic, “Peter Pan.”
In honor of Lauren’s 76th birthday, FN rounded up five things you may not have known about the designer:
1. While he may be best known for his iconic Polo shirts, in August Lauren launched a smart tech shirt for men that has sensors to read vital signs and streams the information to an app that can create customized workouts. The shirt retails for $295.
2. He co-founded the Nina Hyde Center for Breast Cancer Research at Georgetown University to honor his friend, former Washington Post fashion editor Nina Hyde.
3. Lauren has three restaurants. There’s Ralph’s in paris, the Polo Bar in New York and RL Restaurant in Chicago.
4. In 1998, he donated $13 million to the Smithsonian to aid in preserving the flag that inspired the “Star-Spangled Banner.”
5. His birth name is not Ralph Lauren. He was born Ralph Rueben Lifshitz in the Bronx, New York.