Ken Alcazar

Ken Alcazar


Ahead of Next Month’s LA Fashion Week, Moss Adams Announces 2019 MAFI Recipient

Moss Adams,the accounting-and-consulting firm based in Seattle, announced that it has chosen its recipient of the 2019 Moss Adams Fashion Innovator award, which will be presented on Oct. 11 during LA Fashion Week at the Petersen Automotive Museum in the mid-city area of Los Angeles. Los Angeles–based designer Coral Castillo was selected as the 2019 MAFI winner after careful consideration, according to Martin Hughes, Moss Adams’s national practice leader for apparel.

The award was launched 15 years ago by Moss Adams. Last year, the company announced designer Elie Madi as the recipient of the award, which includes $5,000 in Moss Adams services and is bestowed upon a California designer during LA Fashion Week.

“The MAFI award is given each year to a designer who is doing something innovative in the industry,” Hughes said. “Every year we look at a number of different designers and we go through everything. When we saw Coral’s designs and some of her recent runways, the designs were so beautiful, edgy and innovative. She stood out.”

In 2001, Castillo—whose mother is a dressmaker—emigrated from Mexico to the United States. An associate-degree graduate of The Art Institute of California—San Francisco and bachelor’s recipient at the school’s Orange County campus, Castillo is known for her strong designs with feminine details. As a mother of one, Castillo recognizes the challenges that are unique to many women, particularly in the fashion industry.

“There is more work that we have to do to be in a position of power, especially in the fashion industry. I’ve seen women who have kids come to work and they do everything and are successful in their careers,” she said. “My designs are a celebration of that and a reminder that we are still women, we are beautiful, but we are strong and we are warriors.”

With her current collection, Castillo wanted to bring the strength and beauty of female warriors to her garments. Inspired by Greek and Roman mythology, particularly the goddess Nike, Castillo created her collection.

“When designing, I am always thinking of a woman who is strong and powerful that never forgets who she is and is feminine,” she said. “[Receiving this award], I feel lucky and it makes all of my work feel worth it.”