* Jenna Lyons out as president and creative director of J. Crew Group Inc.
* Somsack Sikhounmuong promoted to chief design officer
* No word yet on reasoning behind Lyons’ departure
One of the most influential women in fashion is leaving her perch. J.Crew announced today that Jenna Lyons is leaving her position as president and creative director of J. Crew Group Inc.
The creative force of the brand, Lyons was criticized for taking on too high a profile as she promoted herself as well as the brand. But a tsunami of change has hit retail hard and J.Crew even harder since it is dealing with a heavy debt load.
Lyons will remain as a creative adviser at the company through this year.
She worked at J. Crew for 26 years and has been president and creative director since 2012.
Somsack Sikhounmuong, head of women’s design, will be promoted to chief design officer, overseeing women’s, men’s and crewcuts design teams.
He will report to chairman and chief executive officer Millard “Mickey” Drexler.
“It has been an absolute pleasure to work with Jenna as my trusted partner for the past 14 years,” Drexler said. “She has made many significant contributions to J.Crew and has built an incredibly talented team. J.Crew is focused on continuing the progress underway as we execute on our strategic initiatives and position the company for the long term. We have taken important steps to improve our performance and are confident that the team in place will continue these efforts.”
Drexler added that: “Somsack and our design teams have a deep understanding of the aesthetic and style our customers rely on J.Crew to deliver, with a proven track record of driving creative vision in-line with our brand DNA. We are excited to extend Somsack’s vision across all design categories and look forward to the team’s contributions. As always, delivering the very best product, value and brand experience across channels is our top priority. We look forward to this next chapter and thank Jenna for her continued dedication to our team and passion for our brand.”
This article is being republished with the permission of Women’s Wear Daily. To read the full version, click here.