Gianvito Rossi, a luxury shoe company, is under major heat thanks to Whitney Wilburn. The former manager is filing a racial discrimination lawsuit, claiming that her boss Grace Mazzilli was “immediately hostile” to her “based upon her race and age.” Wilburn was hired to lead the Madison Avenue store back in 2015 and she says she was fired “without warning or final evaluation” back in January. The 46-year-old Black woman believes she was let go because of “Mazzilli’s racial animosity toward African Americans.”
She gave one example of the tennis star Serena Williams trying to get a discount on a purchase, but was met with resistance. The suit says “Gianvito managers responded with racially disparaging comments about Ms. Williams which made it clear that the company did not want African American women to wear its shoes.” Court papers continue that management “referred to Ms. Williams as ‘disgusting’ and refused to offer any discount.” It wasn’t until Vogue contacted the business that “they offered only a fraction of the discount that white celebrities typically receive,” according to the suit.
Mazzilli also allegedly threw events only at boutiques with white staff. The suit claims Mazzilli never put on an event at Wilburn’s location.
Mazzilli has yet to respond to the suit, supposedly because she’s on vacation in Italy. She’ll be met with a nice set of court papers when she gets back.
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