Lord&Taylor: Liz Rodbell (President)
After starting her career as a dress buyer and staying 30 years at Lord & Taylor, Liz Rodbell steps into a new role at Steve Madden shoes, leaving her post as President. Liz spent her entire career evolving the nation’s oldest department store and in most recent years shifting strategy to revive the business. In the past year, Lord and Taylor announced that they will sell their New York City flagship store to WeWork, for $850 million dollars and plans to cut the chain’s count by up to 10 location by the end of January. In addition to these changes, Lord and Taylor has expanded their digital presence stores and launched a partnership with Walmart to expand client base.
Like many of their competitors, the 191 year old retailer’s future is dependent on the pivot to attract younger clientele. While Rodbell dedicated her career to setting trends, there was indication that a change was coming. In 2017, Liz shifted out of her role as president of sister company Hudson’s Bay, and in May of 2018 began closing L&T stores. They could have used her experience, but she likely saw hard choices ahead, and to make it through will need a transformation far from what it is today. Rodbell’s exit may signal difficult times ahead for Lord & Taylor as they struggle to stay competitive in the retail market.