Santa Fe Fashion Week is directed by fashion-visionary and New York-native Stephen Cuomo. Stephen left his monotonous career as a stockbroker and land-developer to pursue something that could really nourish and feed his inner artistic spark. Stephen is the heart and soul of Santa Fe Fashion Week – with both unique and expansive spaces being his blank canvas, he is able to envision spectacular shows while having the ability to stay “en pointe” and “make things happen” with his steely tenacity and sharp business sense. With several years of experience producing high-energy fashion shows and networking events throughout Albuquerque and Santa Fe, Stephen has a passion for creating quality events within new emerging markets. In 2010 he began focusing his talent in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Combining his experience in event planning and marketing, he produced several fashion shows on PBS, showcasing emerging designers, models, and make-up artists. With 9 fashion weeks under his belt, and this year being his most spectacularly successful fashion-week yet, he is really looking forward to launching careers for emerging designers and continuing to add value to community and the business of fashion over the next coming decades.
PRODUCER / DIRECTOR
Deidre Michelle, instructor, model and professional dancer who now currently resides in Albuquerque, New Mexico, moved to Los Angeles at age 22 to pursue a professional dance career. She previously danced and taught here in Albuquerque from the young age of 4 years old training in jazz, ballet/pointe, hip/hop, and contemporary. She was also involved in training and modeling under John Robert Powers where she earned certificates in Modeling, Runway and Commercial. Deidre starting booking modeling jobs at age 13 and landed her first big print job for the New York Times Magazine. At age 16 Deidre booked her first big dance gig for the New Years show in Paris, France.
As well as training and booking jobs, she also taught and choreographed for her home dance studio for all ages from 3 year old tap and ballet through adult jazz, ballet and hip hop. When she was 18 she took over her high school dance team and choreographed jazz and pom pom numbers that placed 1st and 2nd place in state competitions.
After 20 years of dancing and modeling in New Mexico Deidre moved to Los Angeles, California and continued training and teaching on a now professional level at the main dance studio in LA, Millinnium Dance Complex. Since that time she has danced for a number of artists such as Beyonce for music videos and Billboard Music Awards Show. Lead female dancer for Michael Jackson’s Tribute Tour “Dangerous” , Kat Graham for music videos and her “Graffiti” Tour. In addition to many more mainstream, up and coming and international artists as a backup dancer for music videos, live shows and tours. In 2007 Deidre was also was invited and joined one of the most prestigious burlesque groups in the Los Angeles dance community, Ladies in Lace. In 2010 she was even asked to teach for Madonna in Malawi, Africa at Home of Hope orphanage through Madonna’s Raising Malawi program where she learned true appreciation for teaching.
In between dancing gigs, she also booked and walked runway for shows from New York all the way to Japan. Now living back here in her home town Albuquerque, Deidre is focusing on teaching and sharing her skills with kids and adults in all levels and styles. She has also now progressed to being the Producer/Director of SANTA FE FASHION WEEK.
Rip Williams is a fashion, editorial and commercial photographer, photography educator, strategy consultant and community builder based in Albuquerque, NM. A long career in brand development, combined with a penchant for articulate story-telling and an intense 25-year passion for precision camera craft synergize to produce his unique imagery – which has been featured in dozens of gallery exhibitions, published internationally, and received numerous awards. Williams has also served as an expert witness on technical photography, guest writer/blogger for several publications, and frequent lecturer.
Williams strongly supports the artistic community, especially emerging photographers, models, makeup/hair artists, and designers. Since 2006, through his creative collaborative Guerrilla Photo Group, he’s funded over 700 completely free-to-the-artist weekly portfolio development workshops – providing lectures, professional mentorship, zero-cost equipment and, most importantly, an opportunity for interdisciplinary camaraderie in his Downtown Albuquerque studio. He owns Albuquerque’s Strangeflock Gallery, where the primary focus is to provide low-barrier exhibition opportunities to upcoming and non-traditional visual artists. Williams has, since 2016, been a Producer of Santa Fe Fashion Week, where he works alongside fashion industry greats and emerging talent to elevate New Mexico’s fashion industry. Additionally, he serves as a Director in the non-profit sector for an organization charged with maintaining some of Albuquerque’s most historically important structures, as well as on the Board of Directors of the Albuquerque Press Club, an affiliate of the National Press Club in Washington, DC.