America's FDRA announces new chairman & leadership team

08 Jun '21
3 min read
Pic: Shutterstock
Pic: Shutterstock

The Footwear Distributors and Retailers of America (FDRA) has announced a new executive leadership team to guide the footwear industry’s business and trade association over the next two years. The team was approved at the recently held FDRA’s virtual board meeting and took effect June 1, 2021. FDRA is the footwear industry’s business and trade association.

Cliff Sifford, vice chairman and CEO at Shoe Carnival, has been selected to serve as the chairman of FDRA. Sifford has served in various leadership positions with FDRA for several years and his elevation from FDRA vice chairman was unanimous. Jennifer Bendall, vice president of government and public affairs at Nike, will now serve as FDRA’s vice chairman after having served as treasurer. Josue Solano, CEO at BBC International, will take the helm as FDRA’s treasurer. FDRA’s most recent past chairman, Mike Jeppesen, formerly of Wolverine Worldwide, will also serve as an ex-officio member of the FDRA executive committee, FDRA said in a media statement.

“I am honoured to take the helm of our industry’s most effective, innovative and collaborative organisation. There has been no greater tool to serve the industry during these unprecedented times than FDRA. Our industry is changing dramatically and FDRA continues to be the platform by which companies get vital information and can work together to solve common issues and challenges. We will continue to find new ways to engage and educate the industry on a variety of issues to increase efficiencies, driving our members tremendous value from design to retail. If you’re not a member of FDRA, join us. There has never been a greater membership value proposition than there is now,” Sifford said in a statement.

“I’m honoured to have been selected as vice chairman. FDRA is of tremendous importance to footwear companies across the globe. We at Nike understand how important a strong and vibrant trade association is to the overall competitiveness of our industry. I look forward to working with our leadership team to guide FDRA’s efforts, so our industry gets stronger together,” Bendall said.

“Under former chairman Jeppesen’s leadership, FDRA has enhanced its brand and developed into a more robust and professional organisation focused on driving value to every member. From the onset of the Trump tariffs to the acquisition of the Fashion Footwear Association of New York (FFANY) to the challenges of navigating a pandemic, Jeppesen lead FDRA through some of our most challenging and transformational times. As our leadership team resets, I’m excited that Sifford is now taking the reins as chairman. Cliff has been active with FDRA for many years and brings a lifetime of footwear industry leadership to our ranks. I’m also extremely pleased that Bendall will continue to serve in our leadership team, now as vice chairman. Bendall is an amazing leader providing key knowledge on the political and regulatory challenges our industry faces and effective ways to address those challenges,” Matt priest, president and CEO of FDRA said.

Fibre2Fashion News Desk (GK)

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