Elle Macpherson Talks The Power of the Purse

Elle Macpherson
Elle Macpherson by Billie Scheepers

On April 6, Hermès Design District hosted the Power of the Purse annual luncheon to benefit the Women’s Fund of Miami-Dade. Famous supermodel turned entrepreneur, Elle Macpherson served as the event’s honorary chair. We had the chance to talk to Macpherson about the organization.

How did you become involved with the Power of the Purse Program? Was their a personal tie to the organization?
When I moved to Miami in late 2014 after 17 years in London, I was eager to find community. I know from experience, the best way to feel part of a community is through service so I started asking friends what work I could do and with whom. My friend Tiffany Zientz Heckler suggested I explore the work the Women’s Fund was doing in Miami.

I visited many of their initiatives and decided to reach out to see if I could help at all. This led me to co-hosting and co-chairing the Power of the Purse (among other things). I’m grateful to have this opportunity to help.

What advancements and accomplishments has the program seen in the past years since its inception?
Founded 23 years ago, The Women’s Fund Miami-Dade has provided more than $3.7 million to 480 programs supporting women and girls in Miami-Dade. This includes the seed money for programs advocating for women and girls such as Lotus House and Casa Valentina. The Women’s Fund Miami-Dade is a leader in community collaborations including Stop Sex Trafficking MIAMI (35 different organizations working together on this crime against our children), The Girls Coalition and Freedom from Violence. This month Women’s Fund Miami-Dade is kicking off a new initiative called SEE HER VOTE to help educate women on important issues and encourage them to vote.

How did you choose to create the partnership with Hermès? Were there aspects to the brand that you felt were fitting?
I was meeting friends in the Design District a few months ago after leaving a Women’s Fund meeting. The Design District is one of the best destinations in Miami as it is the culmination of architecture, design, art and fashion all in one location. I popped into the Hermès boutique, which is an absolutely beautiful space and one of my favorites. I thought it would be the perfect place to host a special cocktail event celebrating the women that make the Power of the Purse an extraordinary fundraiser. We approached Hermès with the idea and they graciously accepted.

Hermès is renowned for its leather and luxury goods. The Jypsiere is one of my favorite bags! There seemed to be a natural fit between the brand and the Power of the Purse theme.

What other key players are involved with the Power of the Purse charity?
Gloria Estefan, Cristina Saralegui, Diana Nyad, Rachel Roy, Hilarie Bass (incoming chair American Bar Asso), Katherine Fernandez Rundle State Attorney,  Jane Wells (International film maker) Victoria Cummock, Teresa Gonzalez, Sissy de Marie, Mary Young, Marilynn Gladstone, (the founder), Some are or have been involved with Power of the Purse – others have been or are currently involved with The Women’s Fund Miami-Dade in other initiatives.

In what ways will bringing Hermès on board will change this year’s event?
It is an honor to partner with Hermès on the Power of the Purse. Beyond extending the celebratory mood of this year’s fundraiser through this special evening in the Design District, Hermès has donated a private scarf tying event to the silent auction portion of the fundraiser. The winning bidder will bring nine of her closest friends to the Hermès boutique, enjoy champagne, and learn the chicest ways to tie an Hermès scarf. The Design District, fashion and the women that make Miami great, what could be better?

Photos from Power of the Purse Event on Hermès Design District’s rooftop: