July 07, 2018 02:00 PM

Jill Zarin is starting to date again — but tells PEOPLE she’s taking things slow.

For the first time since her beloved husband Bobby died in January, the Real Housewives of New York City alum was seen out and about with another man: clothing executive Gary Brody.

On Saturday, the two and Zarin’s daughter Ally Shapiro took in several matches at Wimbledon.

In an exclusive statement to PEOPLE, Zarin nixes reports that she and Brody have been an item since Bobby died on January 13 after a long battle with thyroid cancer.

“I don’t typically comment on tabloid stories but I felt it was important to set the record straight and let you all know I haven’t been dating anyone for six months,” she says in the statement.

“I just started accepting a few dinner dates after much thought and support from my close friends and family,” she adds. “I felt Bobby would want me to start to live again.”

Ally Shapiro, Jill Zarin, and Gary Brody
SplashNews.com

Zarin tells PEOPLE she and Brody were “friends first and still are. It’s still evolving.”

The two, she says, “have a lot in common and enjoy each other’s company.”

In the the meantime, she thanks fans for sticking by her. “I am taking things very slow as I continue to heal. Thank you all for your love and support,” she says. “It means the world to me. Love, Jill.”

Ally Shapiro at Wimbledon
Jill Zarin/Instagram

The Zarin Fabrics owner is currently in London visiting her daughter, who is earning her Master’s in Contemporary Art at Sotheby’s, with plans to graduate in September.

“Ally has been living in London and I wanted to take the opportunity to spend much-needed quality time with her and our friends abroad,” she tells PEOPLE.

Just days earlier, Zarin and her daughter were just in Mykonos, Greece, celebrating friend Lindsay Lohan‘s 32nd birthday.

Bobby and Jill Zarin
Dave Kotinsky/Getty

RELATED VIDEO: Jill Zarin Gives an Update on Friendship with ‘RHONY’ Star Bethenny Frankel: ‘We’re All Good’

Later this month, Zarin will host her sixth annual luxury luncheon in the Hampton to help raise money and awareness for thyroid-cancer research.

She is dedicating the event to Bobby.

The event will be held at Topping Rose House in Bridgehampton on July 28.

Tickets can be purchased at jillzarin.com, and direct donations can also be made through the site to the International Thyroid Oncology Center, which benefits from the luncheon.

Past guests at the chic luncheon include RHONY stars Luann de Lesseps, Ramona Singer, Tinsley Mortimer and Sonja Morgan.

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