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Designer Charles Nolan Dies at 53

Designer Charles Nolan Dies at 53


Charles Nolan, a designer who mixed his love of fashion and politics, died Sunday at the age of 53.

According to an obituary in The New York Times, "The cause was cancer of the head and neck, said Andrew Tobias, the financial writer, who was Mr. Nolan's partner of 16 years."

A native of New York and graduate of the Fashion Institute of Technology, Nolan worked for labels including Bill Blass, Ellen Tracy, and Anne Klein before starting his own label in 2004. He dressed many prominent women in politics including Tipper Gore, the wife of Vice President Al Gore.

"But his most surprising political statement, at least in the eyes of his colleagues on Seventh Avenue, came in 2003, when he abruptly quit as the head designer of Anne Klein, where he had led a successful turnaround of the brand's image, to volunteer for the presidential campaign of Howard Dean, the former governor of Vermont," reports the Times.

"Mr. Nolan said he had been disillusioned by the hesitancy of major designers to get involved in, or even talk about, politics -- although there was little evidence that his own activism had negatively affected his career."

In addition to his partner, Nolan is survived by his father and four sisters and four brothers.

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