Caleres' Famous Footwear president announces retirement
Caleres announced today that Rick Ausick, president of Famous Footwear, will retire as part of a succession plan for the company this year. Ausick will remain involved in daily operations throughout the transition.
Ausick has been planning his retirement from the company for some time. Diane Sullivan, CEO, president and chairman of Caleres said, “We are actively managing the search for Rick’s successor," which includes both internal and external candidates. She said the goal is to set Famous Footwear up for a seamless transition.
Ausick joined Famous Footwear in 2002 as a senior VP and chief merchandising officer. He focused on improving merchandise assortments, increasing purchasing ratios, reducing inventory and accelerating merchandise turns. He then spent 3 years in the company's wholesale division before returning in 2010 as the Famous Footwear president.
Sullivan said Famous Footwear is on track for low single digit growth in comp sales over last year due to Ausick's strategy. "The success we’ve seen at Famous over the past several years is due to work Rick and his team has completed in targeting high-value consumers and in developing our omnichannel capabilities."
Kirk Palmer Associates is assisting Caleres in finding a successor for Ausick. The search is currently underway.
Caleres operates 1,200 retail stores. Its brands include Sam Edelman, Franco Sarto, Vince, Via Spiga, Diane von Furstenberg, Fergie Footwear and Carlos Santana. It also operates a "Healthy Living" category of brands that include Naturalizer and Dr. Scholl’s Shoes.
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