Libby Edelman on the Challenges of the Next Generation of Women in the Shoe Industry

Every day in June, FN is showcasing female leaders across the industry for our Women in Power series. 

Libby Edelman has been sharing the fashion spotlight with her husband and business partner Sam Edelman over the years, launching a string of successful brands including Sam & Libby and the current Sam Edelman label.  However, this industry veteran has her own voice when it comes to the role of women in today’s competitive shoe business.

Here, Edelman talks about what lies ahead for the next generation of female talent, her stand-put leadership moment, and the advice she follows.

On the biggest challenge for the generation of women behind you:

“I look forward to the day when the dialogue changes because we have achieved equal opportunity for women and men in both the footwear and fashion industry and beyond. I am proud to work for Caleres, a company that leads by example. We have powerful women at every level that serve as strong mentors for the young female talent joining our organization.”

On the most powerful leadership moment you’ve experienced:

“I’m proud to serve alongside our CEO Diane Sullivan and [footwear industry veteran] Carol Baiocchi [co-founders] of Two Ten Footwear Foundation’s WIFI (Women in the Footwear Industry), an organization dedicated to the professional development of women in the industry. WIFI is an incredible community and allows women the opportunity for open conversation and mentorship.”

Advice for women negotiating a promotion of salary increase:

“My advice is to always advocate for yourself. Remain focused on your goals and regardless of the challenge you may be facing, be confident and speak with conviction.”

Advice I follow:

“Always be willing to step beyond your comfort zone and take risks.”

Want more?

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