Alphonso D. McClendon researches and develops curriculum in merchandise operations management, product development and sourcing using product lifecycle management, enterprise resource planning and retail analytics software including AIMS360, ApparelMagic and Edited. McClendon has traveled extensively in Taiwan, China, Japan and South Korea for retail analysis, design research, product development and manufacturing. He is the author of the overview of “Sourcing and Manufacturing” in The Fashion Business Reader (Bloomsbury 2019). In addition, McClendon has lectured at Hanyang, Hongik and Seoul National Universities in South Korea and at the Korean Society of Clothing and Textiles’ annual spring conference in Seoul.
He is the author of Fashion and Jazz: Dress, Identity and Subcultural Improvisation (Bloomsbury 2015). The book explores the social and political attachments of jazz and dress as well as key themes of race, class and gender. McClendon published the article “Black Male Identity and the Embodiment of Early Jazz Improvisation” in Interactions: Studies in Communication & Culture (Intellect 2015) and “Fashionable Addiction”, a book chapter on the influence of the heroin chic aesthetic, in Fashion in Popular Culture: Literature, Media and Contemporary Studies (Intellect 2013). Also, he has authored articles on jazz era prohibition, male dress conformity and defiance, and the history and culture of the U.S. drug policy published respectively in the Australasian Journal of Popular Culture, the on-line Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion and the Internet Journal of Health.
McClendon’s research has been conducted at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, the Institute of Jazz Studies at Rutgers University, the Hogan Jazz Archive at Tulane University, the Archives Center at the National Museum of American History and the Free Library of Philadelphia. He has been an invited lecturer at the Museum of Modern Art of NYC, the Barnes Foundation, Parsons The New School, the Munson-Williams-Proctor Arts Institute and the Fashion Institute of Technology.
McClendon came to Drexel with fifteen years of corporate experience as a director of design, product development manager and accountant having worked with companies such as VF Corp., Nautica, Phillips-Van Heusen, Izod, Dow Corning and 3M. He teaches courses in sourcing strategies for the apparel and textile industry, fashion business practice and entrepreneurship, merchandise operations and management, retail analytics and digital design. McClendon has served as Interim Chair of the Department of Design, Program Director of Design & Merchandising and National Area Chair of Fashion for the Popular Culture Association.