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Problematic Victoria's Secret exec to step down after company hires its first-ever trans model

Problematic Victoria's Secret exec to step down after company hires its first-ever trans model.
Photo credit:
Valentina Sampaio - Instagram

Late in 2018, Victoria's Secret's President and chief marketing officer Ed Razek was in the news for comments he made about not wanting trans women to model lingerie during runway shows. 

"Shouldn’t you have transsexuals in the show? No. No, I don’t think we should," he said in the Vogue article. "Well, why not? Because the show is a fantasy. It’s a 42-minute entertainment special. That’s what it is. It is the only one of its kind in the world, and any other fashion brand in the world would take it in a minute, including the competitors that are carping at us. And they carp at us because we’re the leader."

Those statements created such backlash Razek issued an apology shortly thereafter and it seems they have caught up to him once again as Bloomberg reports Razek is stepping down from his position just as 22-year-old Valentina Sampaio, a trans Brazilian runway model is set to grace the pages of the Victoria's Secret's sportswear catalog, 

“It was a tough conversation to have because, as some of you must know, we have shared so much together for so many years,”  Razek, 71, wrote in an office memo.

Sampaio is no stranger to being rejected from a modeling campaign because she is transgender. In 2014, another company, which she has yet to name, let her go because of it.

That makes her social media post "Never stop dreaming," in celebration of her VS booking feel a lot more poignant.