Industry Moves: October 2018

Oct. 31, 2018: Oboz Footwear has hired Brian Krezel and Bob Downs into its design team. Krezel, who joins the company as director of design, has held similar positions at Grundens Rainwear and Simms Fishing Products. He previously worked as a footwear designer at Converse and Reef. Downs, on the other hand, is now a product developer at Oboz after running his own product development consulting company.

Oct. 30, 2018: New Balance has appointed Joe Preston president and CEO following an announcement that longtime exec Rob DeMartini will step down from the role, effective Dec. 31. DeMartini led the athletic company for 12 years, overseeing global growth from $1.5 billion in 2007 to $4.2 billion this year. Preston, who joined the New Balance team in 1995, currently serves as chief commercial officer.

Oct. 29, 2018: Global Brands Group has announced Rick Darling‘s appointment to the role of CEO and executive director. He succeeds Bruce Rockowitz, who has stepped down but will continue as non-executive vice chairman. The move comes a few months after the company’s sale and purchase agreement with Differential Brands Group.

Oct. 25, 2018: Timberland has tapped Christopher Raeburn as its global creative director. The British fashion designer, recognized for reworking fabrics for his collections, will work with each brand team to create a collection of apparel, footwear and accessories, with his first collection across menswear and womenswear debuting for the fall ’20 season. Raeburn’s partnership with the brand coincides with the launch of his Christopher Raeburn x Timberland collaboration.

Oct. 22, 2018: Macy’s Inc. has named Shawn Outler its EVP and chief diversity officer, effective Oct. 29. Outler was previously EVP, Licensed Businesses, Food Services and Multicultural Initiatives at the department store chain. Macy’s said Outler’s appointment “advances the ongoing commitment to making [it] a company that reflects the diversity of its customers, its colleagues and the communities it serves.” Outler will also serve as the co-chairwoman of the cross-functional Diversity & Inclusion Business Council, a group of leaders throughout the organization focused on such initiatives. Outler joined Macy’s in 2006 as the divisional VP and merchandise manager of Better Traditional Sportswear at Macy’s Central Division in Atlanta.

Oct. 19, 2018: Valentino has hired Giovanni Morelli as accessories design director. The former Stuart Weitzman creative director was ousted from the Tapestry, Inc. owned brand in May amid sexual harassment claims filed by the label’s vice president. At Valentino, Morelli will report to creative director Pierpaolo Piccioli. In an additional move at Valentino, chief marketing officer Isabelle Harvie-Watt has left the brand after six months, leaving the position vacant.

Oct. 17, 2018: Nike Inc. chief information officer Jim Scholefield is exiting his role to join pharmaceutical company Merck & Co., effective Oct. 29. Scholefield will be responsible for leading Merck’s information technology and digital strategy and will be a member of the company’s executive committee. Prior to Nike — which he joined in 2015 — Scholefield was chief technology officer at Coca-Cola.

Oct. 17, 2018: Under Armour chief human resources officer Kerry Chandler will exit the brand on Nov. 2 to take on the same role at California-based talent agency Endeavor. Under Armour has launched a search for a new chief human resources officer, and Michele Campion, VP of human resources, will become interim head of HR. Prior to joining Under Armour, Chandler had spent time with the NBA and sports network ESPN.

Oct. 17, 2018: Nashville, Tenn.-based nonprofit Soles4Souls has hired Rod Arnold — the founder and CEO of charity Leading Good — to serve as its chief marketing officer.

Oct. 15, 2018: Iconix Brand Group Inc. has appointed Robert Galvin president and CEO, effective Oct. 15. Galvin was most recently chairman of Cherokee Inc. and has served as COO and European president of Sports Brands International Ltd., CEO of Elie Tahari Ltd. and president of Camuto Group. He also spent time as EVP and CFO of Nine West Group Inc. Galvin steps in behind Iconix chairman Peter Cuneo, who had been serving as the firm’s interim CEO since June 2018, when John Haugh resigned. Cuneo had also served as Iconix’s interim CEO from August 2015 to April 2016 following the exit of Neil Cole.

Oct. 9, 2018: Vibram Corp. president and CEO Michael Gionfriddo has announced his retirement, effective Dec. 31. Fabrizio Gamberini has been appointed the new president of Vibram’s U.S. business. The company also announced that Richard Riegel, a member of the company’s board of directors, has been appointed chairman of Vibram. Those appointments are effective today. Gionfriddo has been a part of Vibram’s management team since 1998 and served as president since 2011. Gamberini joins Vibram after leadership positions as CEO of Geox USA and of Marcolin USA. He was also a GM at Nike Inc. and Hewlett Packard.

Oct. 8, 2018: Jil Sander has promoted Axel Keller — who joined the company in February as commercial director — to the role of CEO. Keller, who spent 15 years at Balenciaga as commercial director — succeeds Alessandra Bettari, who had been CEO of Jil Sander since 2016. Bettari will remain at the firm as VP of Onward Luxury Group and she will report to Takehiro Shiraishi, who succeeded Franco Penè as the company’s president. Penè holds the role of OLG honorary chairman.

Oct. 4, 2018: Lacoste has announced that it has tapped its first-ever female creative director, Louise Trotter. The British designer will present her first collection during the next Fashion Week in Paris. Trotter spent the past nine years at Joseph before exiting the British-based luxury fashion label in July.

Oct. 2, 2018: J.C. Penney Co. Inc. has announced the appointment of Jill Soltau as CEO, effective Oct. 15. A 30-year retail veteran, Soltau most recently served as president and CEO of Joann Stores. Prior to that, she was president of Shopko Stores, where she spent eight years. Soltau, who has also spent time at Sears and Kohl’s, replaces Marvin Ellison, who departed from the post in June to take the helm at Lowe’s.

Oct. 1, 2018: Regional footwear retailer, Minnesota-based Tradehome Shoes, announced the retirement of its CEO, Patrick Teal, effective Sept. 30. Teal, who started working in Tradehome stores as a part-time worker in 1976, will be succeeded by Tradehome veteran Justin Kehrwald, effective Oct. 1. Kehrwald has spent more than 19 years at Tradehome, most recently serving as COO. He will be only the fourth CEO to lead Tradehome as it nears its 100th year anniversary in 2021.

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