by Stephen Garner
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J.Crew Group said on Thursday that it has taken important steps to build out its leadership team in order to advance its long-term strategic growth plan.

The company has appointed four highly experienced retail industry leaders to its senior management team, which is led by Libby Wadle, J.Crew Group’s chief executive officer.

The new appointments include Jose Davila as chief people officer; Danielle Schmelkin as chief information officer; Derek Yarbrough, as chief marketing officer; and Liz Hershfield, as senior vice president of sustainability.

The company said that these individuals will be integral in accelerating J.Crew Group’s approach to building a digital-first, purpose-driven organization under its J.Crew, Madewell, and J.Crew Factory brands.

“I believe strong and relevant brands are customer-centric, community-minded, purpose-driven and powered through innovation, technology, and a deeply collaborative culture,” said Wadle.  “Jose, Danielle, Derek and Liz are proven leaders in their respective fields, share our core values, and bring significant expertise as well as a passion for our brands that will drive our business forward.”

As chief people officer, Davila will guide J.Crew Group’s overall people strategy and execution. Davila brings 25 years of talent management and brand-building experience, as well as a deep knowledge of the retail industry to J.Crew Group. He most recently served as vice president of human resources for Levi Strauss & Co., where he oversaw North and South America. Previously, he spent more than ten years at Gap Inc., where he held a series of leadership positions, including head of international human resources, head of human resources for Banana Republic, and vice president of human resources for the Gap brand stores organization.

As chief information officer, Schmelkin will lead the company’s digital transformation by maximizing data insights, increasing connectedness and interactivity with customers, driving innovation, and fortifying IT architecture. She most recently served as chief information officer of Madewell. Schmelkin is a recognized technology and digital innovator who brings over 20 years of experience to this position.

As chief marketing officer, Yarbrough is responsible for all marketing, creative, and e-commerce initiatives for the J.Crew and Madewell brands. Yarbrough is a recognized leader in e-commerce, marketing, and the fashion industry and brings over 20 years of experience to this newly created position. He spent the previous eight years at Madewell where he played increasingly important roles, and most recently served as the brand’s CMO.

And, as senior vice president of sustainability, Hershfield leads sustainability innovation for the J.Crew, Madewell, and J.Crew Factory brands. She will focus on driving a company-wide sustainability agenda that will maximize positive impact and position the J.Crew Group as a leader in sustainable retail. She will continue to oversee sourcing for Madewell as well as this new role. Hershfield brings over 25 years of experience and deep knowledge of sourcing and sustainability to the position.

These leaders are part of a strong management team that includes Michael Nicholson, chief operating officer and Vincent Zanna, chief financial officer.