by John Russel Jones

johnnie-O announced today that John Collins has joined the company as Chief Executive Officer and Board Member. As CEO, John Collins succeeds Dave Gatto, who has played an instrumental role in johnnie-O’s journey as CEO and Board Director since January 2015. Dave will retire this year after a remarkable career, including the nearly nine years he spent building the johnnie-O brand and positioning it for future expansion.

Collins began his distinguished career with Patagonia in 1996, where he spent over two decades championing brand storytelling that captivates consumers, creating quality products with clear consumer benefits, and developing robust omnichannel retail strategies. His extensive experience includes leadership roles in domestic and international sales and general management, showcasing his ability to connect with consumers globally and drive brand growth in the competitive retail environment.

In his new role, Collins will focus on accelerating the growth of johnnie-O’s business through increased brand investment and omnichannel expansion, including wholesale and branded retail development. He will also employ strategic digital and DTC-led initiatives to support sustained brand growth and explore entering new product categories to better serve johnnie-O consumers.

On the appointment of John Collins as CEO, Dave Gatto commented, “It was important to me and the johnnie-O board of directors that my successor was someone who valued authenticity and integrity and would not only uphold the work we’ve done to bolster the brand but make even greater progress towards our growth goals. I am thrilled that we found that person in JC. With JC’s strong track record in leadership and a clear vision for the future, I am confident that he will help take johnnie-O to new heights.”

“This is an important and exciting moment in the company’s growth,” said Collins. “As a johnnie-O customer, I was already aware of our great product and when I dug deeper, I found a fantastic community of people. From our employees to our customers, johnnie-O resonates so well, and I am grateful that Dave Gatto, John O’Donnell, and the larger johnnie-O team are entrusting me to help lead the brand into its next phase.”

Collins’ focus on product excellence and customer satisfaction aligns perfectly with the values and vision of johnnie-O and makes him a vital addition to the johnnie-O family. johnnie-O Founder John O’Donnell expanded on this sentiment, saying, “John brings a wealth of experience and expertise in cultivating brands that consumers love and trust. I look forward to working with him on the next big chapter for johnnie-O and bringing the company’s full potential to life. I also want to thank Dave for his many years of service to johnnie-O and wish him the best as he embarks on retirement. His impact on me and johnnie-O is lasting, and I know he’ll continue to embody the j-O ethos in the sun, surf, and on the links.”

johnnie-O is proud of its consistent growth in revenue by over 20% in 16 out of the 17 years since its inception. Following a successful round of minority investment funding in 2022, investment in its eCommerce and retail channels, and expansion of the brand’s marketing leadership with the appointment of Norma Delaney as CMO, johnnie-O has continued to make significant strides in the last year to solidify its position as a premium retail brand that delivers with best-in-class quality, fit, and design for johnnie-O consumers.