Marc Jacobs was born in New York City on April 9, 1963. After graduating from the High School of Art and Design in 1981 he entered Parson's School of Design. As a design student at Parson's, Jacobs was the recipient of some of the schools highest honors. He was awarded the Perry Ellis Gold Thimble Award, the Chester Weinberg Gold Thimble Award, and the Design Student of the Year Award all in 1984. While still at Parson's Jacobs also designed and sold his first collection of hand-knitsweaters. The collection was designed for Ruben Thomas, Inc., which is still in tact today. In 1986, backed by Kashiyama USA, Inc., Jacobs designed his first collection bearing the Marc Jacobs label. The following year, Jacobs received the distinct honor of being the youngest designer ever to be awarded the fashion industry's highest tribute: The Council of Fashion Designers of America (CDFA) Perry Ellis Award for New Fashion Talent. In 1989 Jacobs and Duffy joined Perry Ellis. Duffy was named President and Jacobs was named Vice-President of Women's Design. While at Perry Ellis, Jacobs oversaw the design of various women's licensees as well as creting the designer collection. In 1992, the CFDA once again bestowed Jacobs with a distinct honor: the Women's Designer of the Year Award. In the fall of 1993, Jacobs Duffy Designs Inc. launched their own licensing and design company: Marc Jacobs International Company, LP.