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The Team

Meet Plus Academy Director- Marie Denee

Plus Academy Bay Area Director Marie DeneeThe inception of “Plus Academy” has aroused nationwide interest. Executive Director, Gwen DeVoe has carefully chosen her staff, representative for the Bay Area is plus size fashion blogger, journalist, and boutique owner, Marie Denee.

After wearing many hats in the retail world over the past 11+ years, I noticed that there were not many options for me, a proud size 16+.  The Contemporary, high fashioned, impeccably fitting, high quality fits were absent and devoid of what I longed for.  Shopping became an art- learning how to sniff out the latest designers that “got it.”

Thus, The Curvy Fashionista was born.  An unapologetic, celebratory, uplifting, fashion forward and body positive fashion site to share with all the Curvy.Confident.Chic.  Fashionistas that we CAN don the latest and greatest of trends, fashions and styles that are made with US in mind!

Last September, I launched my eponymous contemporary boutique,, an upscale contemporary online boutique to offer today’s fashion forward, curvy, confident, and chic plus size woman, a sanctuary where she can confidently shop the latest designer fashions in her size, without sacrificing her desires for premium, fashion forward, and impeccably fit options.

My goal for the plus size woman is simple: Keep it Curvy.Confident.Chic.

Meet The Instructors

Charleston Pierce

Runway Coach Charleston PierceIn San Francisco, Charleston is most well known for his dynamic presence on the runway in the Macy’s Passport annual fashion shows and Charleston Pierce Presents.  Mr. Pierce’s career spans almost two decades and has included countless appearances in national billboard campaigns, print advertising spots, commercials, fashion shows, movies as well as a long and thriving modeling career.

Charleston will lead the Ready to Runway course.

Dana Roeting

Plus Model Dana Roeting

Dana Roeting spent a decade based out of New York City successfully working as a rare size 18 model. Now she is happily living and working in the Bay area and loving it. She began her career working in print, runway, and showroom and later as a very successful and in demand fit model. She has graced several magazines and print ads with some of her clients including Good Housekeeping, Self, Old Navy, Playtex, Macys, and Oxygen Network.

With a love and passion for the plus size fashion and modeling industry she felt compelled to return to school to study fashion design and merchandising and has enjoyed working on both sides of the camera. She has always been a strong advocate for the plus size community through lecturing to fashion students and speaking with media regarding the ever increasing plus size fashion industry and the endless possibilities. She is currently working on launching her own clothing line and writing a guide for fit models

Dana will fashion the course, Plus Modeling 101.

Tracey Brown

 Tracey Brown

Tracey Brown, beauty expert based in the San Francisco Bay Area is the owner of Brown Beauty Consulting, author of Blinging Beauty and Director of Glamour for Mahogany Butterfly. After 25 years wearing multiple hats from makeup artist to copywriter, Tracey is a beauty editor, brand strategist and writer for the cosmetic industry.

Tracey will head the course About Face.

Y’Anad Burrell

Y’Anad Burrell is the Founder & CEO of Glass House Communications, a boutique Public Relations/Event Design firm in the Bay Area specializing in the fashion, beauty, lifestyle and branded entertainment arenas.  Burrell has over six years editorial experience as the Fashion & Beauty editor for a local magazine and she has previewed and attended multiple high-end fashion shows including Toronto Fashion Week, New York Fashion Week, LA Fashion Week, Dallas Fashion Week and many others.

Burrell is the Founder and Creative Director of Fashion on the Square(FOTS) in San Francisco, a benefit fundraising event for various non-profits.  FOTS is proud to be one of the largest and longest running runway fashion shows on the West Coast. Burrell is now building the Fashion On The Square Institute, a program that embodies the ‘business of fashion on and off the runway.

Y’Anad will conduct the course, the Business of Modeling.

Tiffanie Drummer

Tiffanie Drummer is the owner of Hands of Healing Massage & Spa Studio in Hayward, California specializing in therapeutic massage, skincare, full body & eyebrow waxing, nails, make-up, eyelashes, and spa treatments.

In addition to owning her Spa, Tiffanie is a model and an Ardyss consultant. She has participated in several other modeling troops/fashion shows throughout California including the Bay Area locals: MTM Models, Exotica 2000, 2001 Productions, Victorius Models, DSP Models, Skin is In, and the NAACP Annual Fashion Shows, along with many others.

Tiffanie will fashion the course, Know Your Foundation.

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