by Stephen Garner
Ellen Davis

The National Retail Federation has announced that NRF Foundation executive director Ellen Davis has been named the president of the Foundation. She will continue serving as NRF’s senior vice president for research and strategic initiatives.

The Foundation is NRF’s philanthropic arm, and as president, Davis will continue to oversee a team charged with job-readiness training, education, scholarship programs and credentialing.

Davis joined NRF in 2002 as manager of media relations and rose quickly through the organization on the communications team before becoming executive director of the Foundation in 2012. In that role, she restructured the division to better align with NRF’s strategic plan and programs. Among her initiatives, she launched the NRF Foundation Gala, an annual event held during the NRF annual convention in New York that raised $2.8 million this year to support the Foundation’s programs. She also formed the NRF Talent Acquisition Group, a network of more than 60 talent human resources executives from the nation’s most well-known retailers. Last year, she led the creation of RISE Up, a nationwide program that works with non-profits to provide job training and credentialing in basic retail skills.

“Under Ellen’s leadership, the breadth, depth and positive influence of the NRF Foundation have been transformative,” said Matthew Shay, president and CEO of NRF. “Ellen has translated strategic vision into reality, and she and the Foundation’s extraordinary staff have successfully conducted multiple programs across a myriad of platforms that are recognized as the new industry standard. Their work is unrivaled and greatly valued by all retailers.”

“It has taken a true team effort to achieve the successes we have seen, whether it’s raising awareness of the importance of the retail industry to the economy or helping job seekers become trained and find a career in retail,” added Davis. “There is still much work to be done, and I’m so excited to work with our leadership to continue to impact retail’s next generation.”