A West Virginia University researcher has been honored for her exploration of customer satisfaction among African-American women.

Nora M. MacDonald, professor of fashion design and merchandising at WVU, Shirley A. Lazorchak, associate professor and program coordinator of marketing at California University of Pennsylvania, and Kristi M. Currie, currently pursuing a certificate in image consulting from the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City, were recognized by the Family & Consumer Sciences Research Journal for their article, “African-American Women’s Satisfaction with the Design and Marketing of Ready-to-Wear Clothing.”

The article was selected as the top FCSRJ article in the apparel, textiles, and merchandising category and was a runner-up for the FCSRJ 2009 Outstanding Article Award. Articles were evaluated based upon the following criteria: originality of the topic, standards of research design and methodology, and potential to make a lasting contribution to theory and/or practice in family and consumer sciences.

MacDonald, Lazorchak, and Currie conducted a study to assess older African-American women’s perceptions of how well their clothing needs were being met. Thirty-two African-American women from the Charleston, W.Va., area participated in the study, which indicated dissatisfaction with the portrayal of African-American females in targeted advertisements and the fit of clothing. The African-American market has increased dramatically as a percentage of the United States population, with purchasing power estimated at more than $800 billion.

The collaboration gave MacDonald the opportunity to catch up with two former students. Lazorchak (‘79) and Currie (‘00) both earned their undergraduate degrees in Fashion Design and Merchandising from WVU.

Published by the American Association of Family and Consumer Sciences, the Family and Consumer Sciences Research Journal publishes original research in all areas of family and consumer science concerned with the well-being of families and individuals, including areas such as human development and family studies; food and nutrition; family and consumer science education; personal finance and family economics; housing, equipment, and interior design; textiles, apparel and merchandising; and professional issues.

Based in the Washington, D.C. area, AAFCS is the only professional association for FCS students and professionals from both multiple practice settings and content areas. For more than 100 years, AAFCS has focused its mission on providing leadership and support for professionals whose work assists individuals, families, and communities in making more informed decisions about their well-being, relationships, and resources to achieve optimal quality of life. Members provide research-based knowledge about the topics of everyday life, including human development, personal and family finance, housing and interior design, food science, nutrition and wellness, textiles and apparel, and consumer issues. They are early childhood, elementary, secondary, university/college, and Extension educators, administrators and managers, human service and business professionals, researchers, community volunteers, and consultants who create integrated solutions to complex social and economic challenges.



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