Cleveland Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield anticipated that people wouldn’t understand why he was presenting Caleres CEO Diane Sullivan with the Person of the Year Award at the 2018 FNAAs tonight.
“I’m guessing a lot of you are curious why Diane chose me, a rookie quarterback from Cleveland, to present her with Person for the Year,” Mayfield said as soon as he hit the stage at the IAC Building in New York.
The star of the gridiron then let the industry insiders in on a conversation he and Sullivan had leading up to the show.
“She said, ‘Footwear is like football. There’s four quarters, there’s downs, there’s lots of pressure, but it’s lots of fun, there’s lots of learning experiences and your competition wants to rip your head off,’” Mayfield said.
Apparently, the football player and the shoe industry veteran had more in common than he thought. However, Mayfield did say he wasn’t Sullivan’s first choice.
“Here’s the last thing she said to me: ‘Really I wanted a handsome young man to present me with this award, but Tom Brady wasn’t available,’” Mayfield said with a laugh.
But Sullivan did let everyone know the real reason why she aligned with, and admires, Mayfield.
“I think you embody everything that I respect, which is courage, confidence and that idea that you have a vision about where you’re going to go,” Sullivan said.
The FN Achievement Awards is a night in which business leaders, A-list celebrities, big-name influencers and more gather at the IAC Building in New York to recognize and celebrate veteran brands, emerging talents and revitalized retailers (watch the livestream here). This year’s honorees include Bruce Nordstrom, who was honored with the Lifetime Achievement Award; Diane Sullivan as Person of the Year; Tabitha Simmons as Designer of the Year; and Christie Brinkley and her daughters, Sailor Brinkley-Cook and Alexa Ray Joel, as FN’s first multigenerational style influencers; and more. Learn more about all the honorees here.
The sponsors for the awards are FFANY, the Footwear Distributors & Retailers of America, Micam, Zappos Luxury, Ruffino Wine and Avery Dennison RBIS.
Below, see Christie Brinkley and her daughters take control at FN’s cover shoot.
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