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Evelyn and Leonard Lauder photo by Julie Skarratt


Brokaw LauderThe Gen. Alexander M. Haig Global Impact Award was presented to Leonard Lauder on

behalf of Evelyn Lauder on March 5th at The Breakers Palm Beach. The award is for a Palm Beach resident whose work has made the world a better place to live.

Tom Brokaw & Leonard Lauder


Senior Corporate Vice President and Head of Fragrance Development Worldwide
The Estée Lauder Companies Inc.
Founder of the Breast Cancer Research Foundation

Evelyn H. Lauder (1936-2011) was the Senior Corporate Vice President and Head of Fragrance Development Worldwide for the Estée Lauder Companies Inc.  During her more than 50 years with the Company, she held many positions while contributing her invaluable insights about fashion trends, consumers' changing needs, and new approaches to the development of innovative skin care, makeup and fragrance products. She also helped name the Clinique brand. As Head of Fragrance Development Worldwide for the Estée Lauder Companies, she led the development of the Company’s most globally successful fragrances, including the best-selling Beautiful and Pleasures.

Mrs. Lauder was perhaps best known to the public for her work in bringing global awareness to women’s health. Her personal experience with early stage breast cancer in 1987, led her in 1992, to co-create, with Alexandra Penney of SELF magazine, the now ubiquitous Pink Ribbon, recognized as the worldwide symbol of breast health. In conjunction, Mrs. Lauder launched the Estée Lauder Companies Breast Cancer Awareness (BCA) Campaign (www.bcacampaign.com). To date, the BCA Campaign has distributed more than 115 million Pink Ribbons and informational brochures worldwide.  In 2000, Mrs. Lauder and the BCA Campaign launched its annual “Global Landmarks Illumination Initiative,” whereby historic landmarks are illuminated in pink lights during the month of October to focus global attention on breast health.  In 2010, the BCA Campaign illuminated 38 global historic landmarks within a 24-hour timeframe and achieved the first-ever Guinness World Record for “Most Landmarks Illuminated for a Cause in 24 Hours.” Included among the 38 iconic landmarks were the Taj Mahal Palace & Tower Hotel in India, the Tokyo Tower in Japan, the Hotel Majestic in France, and the Empire State Building in New York City.

Mrs. Lauder was also Chairman of The Breast Cancer Research Foundation (BCRF), which she founded in 1993. She was passionately committed to preventing breast cancer and finding a cure in her lifetime by funding the most innovative clinical and translational research at leading medical centers worldwide. To date, BCRF has raised more than $355 million and currently supports 186 researchers across the United States, Canada, Latin America, Europe, the Middle East, and Australia. 

In 1989, Mrs. Lauder initiated the fundraising drive that established the Evelyn H. Lauder Breast Center at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York City. As the first breast and diagnostic center, it became a model for similar facilities around the world.  The expanded Evelyn H. Lauder Breast Center opened in September 2009 and is three times the size of its predecessor. It provides the most up-to-date breast cancer prevention, diagnosis, and outpatient treatment services and serves as a worldwide model for offering coordinated supportive services under one roof for one disease, a concept which has been replicated in other institutions and for other diseases.

Mrs. Lauder’s achievements have garnered global recognition. In 2002, she received France’s Chevalier de la Légion d’Honneur. In June 2007, Mrs. Lauder received the prestigious 2007 Partners in Progress Award from the American Society of Clinical Oncology for her efforts to increase public awareness about cancer. In 1999 and 2007, she was featured in Crain’s New York Business magazine as one of New York’s 100 Most Influential Women in Business, and in 2008 she was nominated to the International Best Dressed List. In 2010, Mrs. Lauder received the Fashion Group International Humanitarian Award in recognition for her work with BCRF and her tireless efforts toward eradicating breast cancer. In October 2011, the Lauder family received the prestigious Carnegie Medal of Philanthropy for their longstanding commitment to philanthropy and public service.   In December 2011, Mrs. Lauder posthumously received the inaugural WWD Beauty Inc. Corporate Social Responsibility Award for setting a precedent with her industrious mission to raise awareness for breast cancer and funds for research.

Mrs. Lauder was a dedicated photographer, whose art has been represented in many public and private collections, including The Whitney Museum of American Art, The Museum of Fine Arts in Houston, and leading medical facilities worldwide. She’s had two photography books published of her own work, The Seasons Observed and, An Eye for Beauty. Her photographs have been exhibited internationally, including the Pace/MacGill Gallery in New York City, Berggruen Gallery in San Francisco, Duran Exposiciones de Arte in Madrid, The Red Gate Gallery in Beijing and at the Galerie des Galeries at the Galeries Lafayette in Paris. Her most recent photography exhibition “Salon Beauties” opened at the Gagosian Gallery in London on September 29, 2011. In September 2006, Mrs. Lauder published her first cookbook, In Great Taste: Fresh, Simple Recipes for Eating and Living Well. All of Mrs. Lauder’s royalties from her books and exhibitions are donated to BCRF.

Evelyn Lauder passed away from complications of non-genetic ovarian cancer on November 12th, 2011. She is survived by her husband Leonard A. Lauder, Chairman Emeritus of the Estée Lauder Companies; her son William, Executive Chairman of the Estée Lauder Companies; her son Gary, Managing Director of Lauder Partners LLC and his wife Laura, General Partner of Lauder Partners; and her five grandchildren.

Chairman Emeritus
The Estée Lauder Companies Inc.

Leonard A. Lauder is Chairman Emeritus of The Estée Lauder Companies Inc. and is currently the senior member of its Board of Directors. Founded in 1946, the Company is one of the world's leading manufacturers and marketers of quality skin care, makeup, fragrance and hair care products, with annual sales of $8.8 billion. Its products are sold in over 150 countries and territories across more than 25 well-recognized brand names.

A graduate of the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School, Mr. Lauder also studied at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Business and served as a lieutenant in the U.S. Navy. He formally joined Estée Lauder in 1958, when it had annual sales of $800,000. Mr. Lauder consistently developed and implemented innovative sales and marketing programs and increased the Company’s sales and profits. He created its first research and development laboratory and brought in professional management on every level. He also initiated The Estée Lauder Companies’ international expansion, which began in 1960 with the opening of the Estée Lauder account at Harrods in London.

Mr. Lauder served as President of The Estée Lauder Companies from 1972 to 1995 and as Chief Executive Officer from 1982 to 1999. He added the title of Chairman in 1995 and served as Chairman of The Estée Lauder Companies through June 2009. Under his leadership, the Company launched many brands, including Aramis, Clinique, Lab Series Skincare for Men and Origins. Beginning in the mid-1990s, the company also began expanding through acquisitions, including Aveda, Bobbi Brown, Jo Malone, La Mer and M•A•C.

In addition to his activities with The Estée Lauder Companies, Mr. Lauder is extremely involved in the worlds of education, art, politics and philanthropy. He is a charter trustee of the University of Pennsylvania and a founding member of the board of governors of its Joseph H. Lauder Institute of Management and International Studies. Mr. Lauder became a trustee of the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York City in 1977 and currently serves as its Chairman Emeritus. He is Co-Founder and Chairman of the Alzheimer’s Drug Discovery Foundation, a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, a trustee of The Aspen Institute, Chairman of The Aspen Institute International Committee, and a member of the President’s Council of Memorial Sloan-Kettering Hospital.  Mr. Lauder served on the Advisory Committee for Trade Negotiations under President Ronald Reagan.  Included among his honors, he was presented with the National Order of Merit by the French Government, named an Officier de la Légion d’Honneur by France and recognized by The United States Navy Supply Corps Foundation with its Distinguished Alumni Award. Most recently, the Lauder Family received the esteemed 2011 Carnegie Medal of Philanthropy in recognition of their longstanding commitment to philanthropy and public service.

Mr. and Mrs. Lauder have two sons; William, Executive Chairman of The Estée Lauder Companies, and Gary, Managing Director, Lauder Partners LLC, and five grandchildren.