Success Made to Measure

Paulette Garafalo (BBA ‘78, MBA ‘80), Paul Stuart President and CEO

It was in graduate school in the School of Business that Paulette Garafalo, who was unsure which career path to take, had a sort of epiphany—international trade and business was what she was made to do.

“I loved International Marketing and the International Case Study. In the two-semester Business Case, we divided into groups of four or five, and we had a company to run. One of us would take production, another finance, another marketing, and we ran simulations to bring the company to profitability. We had great adjunct professors that were on the ground, working in the fields we were studying and sharing their own stories. I love travel, and they let me dream of the possibilities of working internationally.”

Garafalo has put those dreams and lessons into practice during her 40-year career, bringing tremendous growth to luxury international apparel brands like Bally of Switzerland, where she worked full time while studying, and later advanced to CEO. She went on to become CEO of Hartmax Luxury Group at Hickey-Freeman, and president of International, Wholesale and Manufacturing at Brooks Brothers. Now, as President and CEO of Paul Stuart, she’s advancing technology, along with more casual and women’s lines, to give the venerable menswear company new life.

A Queens native of Italian and German descent, Garafalo was the first generation of her family to get a college education, an opportunity that neither she nor her fellow students at the School of Business took lightly. “When you’re at a New York City public college and you’re first generation, you work really hard, you don’t take anything for granted, and you earn everything.” It’s as true today, she says, which is why she is happy to mentor and hire Zicklin grads. “They set high expectations for themselves.” And, she adds, they deliver.