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Caleres announces changes to leadership structure

Dec '20
Pic: Caleres
Pic: Caleres
Caleres has announced transformational changes to its leadership structure that will ensure greater alignment with its strategic direction, accelerate its growth initiatives, unlock the power of its portfolio of brands and drive long-term value for its shareholders. Caleres is an American footwear company that owns and operates a variety of footwear brands.

The transition combines the organisation’s operating divisions under a unified structure for growth, strengthening consumer engagement, expanding consumer insights, advancing robust brand goals and awareness, harnessing creativity, and furthering innovation.

To that end, Jay Schmidt has been named president of the company, effective immediately. As president, Schmidt will assume responsibility for all of the consumer and brand strategy for Caleres’ entire portfolio, which includes Famous Footwear, Allen Edmonds, Dr. Scholl’s, Naturalizer, Sam Edelman and Vionic, among others. Schmidt most recently held the position of division president, Caleres brand portfolio, where he has added to his already-strong portfolio knowledge. Prior to joining the company in 2009, Schmidt spent more than 25 years developing his extensive merchandising, portfolio management and brand marketing experience. He holds a bachelor’s degree in commerce and marketing from the University of Virginia, according to a press release by Caleres.

Lydia Park Luis joins Caleres as president, brand portfolio-New York group, and will have responsibility for the company’s international business. Luis was most recently chief executive officer of Jack Rogers where she oversaw rebranding and reorganisation of the 60-year-old footwear brand. Prior to Jack Rogers, she was chief commercial officer of Rag & Bone and held leadership positions at Tory Burch, where she led the US wholesale business and international operations and licensing.

Keith Duplain has been promoted to president, brand portfolio, St. Louis group. Duplain has been with Caleres for 15 years and has more than two decades of experience within the industry. Duplain’s creative spirit and change-oriented mind-set positions him well for this new role and greater level of responsibility.

As previously disclosed, effective November 20, 2020, Michael Edwards was named president, Famous Footwear leading Caleres’ largest brand.

Willis Hill, Caleres’ senior vice president and chief information officer, has been entrusted to assemble the core digital team, formulate a strategy, execute the plan and drive further ecommerce growth across the entire portfolio. This team, led by Hill, will drive the organisation’s digital efforts to meet the evolving needs of the consumer. Together, they will lead the company’s collective digital strategy to leverage its previous investments, build competitive differentiation, align our business with consumer preferences, and accelerate digital growth across the organisation. Hill has been with Caleres for 12 years, holding positions of increasing responsibility within the organisation, contributing meaningfully to the development of the company’s digital and technology platform.

“Schmidt is a strategic and innovative leader, merchant at his core, cultural steward, and the ideal person to step into the president’s role. Luis, Duplain and Edwards, in combination with the outstanding leadership of Sam Edelman and Chris Gallagher, will create an even more powerful team as we continue to drive our consumer and brand strategy moving forward,” Diane Sullivan, chairman and chief executive officer of the company said.

Fibre2Fashion News Desk (GK)

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