Eileen Fisher to step back from CEO role at namesake brand
Eileen Fisher has announced that she is planning to step down from the position of chief executive officer at her eponymous apparel brand, known for its pioneering approach to sustainability.
According to multiple reports, the Eileen Fisher brand has hired New York-based executive search firm Kirk Palmer Associates to help it find a new CEO and intends to have a fresh face in the role by the start of 2022.
Fisher herself will remain at the company, where she will continue to chair the board and lead design. Ultimately, however, she also intends to transition away from this creative role.
In the past, Fisher has experimented with different leadership models and worked in tandem with co-CEO Jonci Cukier from 2018 to December 2020, when Cukier retired.
The 71-year-old designer founded the brand that bares her name in 1984 and quickly drew attention with her minimalist aesthetic and use of high-quality, luxurious fabrics. Her brand, of which she owns 60%, with the remainder being held by the company’s approximately 770 employees, was an early adopter of sustainability initiatives.
The company launched its Renew take-back program in 2009, allowing customers to bring pieces into stores for resale or recycling. Through its Waste No More initiative, the brand has taken back more than 1.4 million pieces of apparel to date, transforming damaged pieces that cannot be repaired into completely new designs.
The Eileen Fisher brand has also been a leader in the use of sustainable materials, becoming one of the first fashion labels to introduce wool certified to the Responsible Wool Standard in 2018.
According to FashionUnited, the company, which currently operates just under 60 retail stores, generates around $250 million in sales.
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