J.Crew Group announced on Tuesday that Libby Wadle has been named its chief executive officer, overseeing J.Crew and J.Crew Factory in addition to her current leadership responsibilities at Madewell. Jan Singer, who was just named J.Crew Group’s CEO in late January, has elected to pursue other endeavors.
“To be successful in today’s retail environment, brands must have a strong sense of purpose, deep connection with their customers, and an organizational structure that rewards creativity, agility, and innovation,” said Wadle. “Moving forward as a company under unified leadership, we will harness the power of our collective platforms and talented teams to ensure our brands can continue to inspire and grow.”
Wadle has more than 25 years of retail and apparel industry experience and has spent the last 16 years at J.Crew, where she has held senior management roles at each brand.
Most recently, she served as president and then CEO of Madewell, where the brand has experienced significant, consistent growth under her leadership. Wadle has played an instrumental role in transforming the brand from a start-up division within the company, to a high growth industry leader. Before that, she was president of the J.Crew brand, which included oversight of Madewell, from 2013 to 2017, the executive vice president of the J.Crew brand from 2011 to 2013, executive vice president-retail and factory from 2010 to 2011, and was executive vice president-factory and Madewell from 2007 to 2010. She joined the company in 2004 as vice president of J.Crew Factory.
Prior to joining J.Crew, Wadle was division vice president of women’s merchandising at Coach, Inc. from 2003 to 2004 and held various merchandising positions at The Gap, Inc. from 1995 to 2003.
“Libby’s connectivity to the J.Crew and Madewell brands, proven ability to build community both inside and outside the organization, and track record of delivering excellent operating and financial performance make her the ideal person to lead J.Crew Group,” added Kevin Ulrich, chairman of J.Crew’s Board of Directors. “Importantly, we thank Jan for her dedication and contributions to J.Crew and her partnership in leading the company through a challenging year in our industry. We wish her the best in her future endeavors.”