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Joy Place to oversee Von Maur's 27 stores product buying
Jan '12
Von Maur Department Store announced the promotion of Joy Place to vice president of merchandising, effective immediately. She will report directly to Melody Westendorf, chief operating officer of Von Maur.

Place, 37, who brings more than 14 years of retail and merchandising experience to her new role, will now be responsible for overseeing product buying for all of Von Maur's 27 locations.

This entails leading efforts to grow the Company's merchandise distribution, including: staying atop industry and product trends; maintaining and pursuing new vendor relationships; continuing to provide customers with the industry's most sought after brands and products; and hiring and maintaining a strong team of buyers. Reporting to Place will be the Company's merchandising employees, along with the Company's advertising and analyst departments.

"Von Maur's strategic merchandising program nurtures strong relationships with many of the nation's premier brands in order to ensure we remain ahead of key trends and repeatedly exceed shopper expectations," said Westendorf. "With strong sales and merchandising instincts cultivated over her 14 years with Von Maur, Joy is uniquely positioned to deliver the competitive mix of products and brands our customers demand, all while driving meaningful value for our partners."

Von Maur is known for its outstanding selection of brand name and specialty apparel, shoes, accessories and gifts, featuring products from leading brands such as Eileen Fisher, Free People, Coach, Joe's Jeans and Tommy Bahama, among many others.

"Von Maur has enabled me to grow my career in ways I never imagined," said Place. "I plan to use the extensive experience I've gained to not only maintain our existing store vendor relationships, but to pursue new relationships that will drive future sales growth."

For the last seven years, Place has served as the general manager of merchandising of all feminine apparel at Von Maur, where she supervised a team of 20 buyers. During that time, Place led efforts to transform the Company's mix of feminine apparel, specifically strengthening its distribution in the contemporary fashion sector.

A graduate of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Place has a bachelor's degree in secondary education, with a focus in English.

Von Maur is widely-regarded for its superior customer service, including an interest-free charge card, liberal return policy, free gift wrapping and shipping services. The Company also offers its associates above-market wages, excellent benefits and a positive, professional work environment.

Von Maur was founded nearly 140 years ago in downtown Davenport, Iowa. The Company currently operates 27 stores in 11 states.

Von Maur Department Store

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