July 27, 2022 – E.A. Hughes & Co., a division of Solomon Page specializing in retail and consumer-focused executive search, has partnered with JCPenney in identifying and placing Shenece Johns as the department store chain’s head of inclusion and diversity. Managing directors Ann MacCarthy and Bob Marchant led the search and took a unique and personalized approach to the assignment.
Reporting to the chief human resources officer, Ms. Johns will work with internal stakeholders, external stakeholders, and business leaders, to develop a next level strategy that will champion an inclusive and diverse workforce, ensure supplier diversity, provide guidance on cultural competencies and sustainable practices, and provide direction to further drive the evolution of the company’s human capital strategy, said E.A. Hughes.
The search firm’s team was able to assess the technical and cultural fit of candidates evaluated for the role as a result of behavioral interviewing, in-depth screening, and a competency-based framework, which accurately defined the skills that JCPenney required. As a result of her extensive experience and reputation within the industry, Ms. Johns was identified for this role.
Ms. Johns brings over 20 years of leadership experience at Lockheed Martin, Alcon, Deloitte Consulting, and Accenture Consulting to her new role. During her time at Lockheed Martin as the director of global diversity and inclusion and interim director, talent and organization capability, she oversaw and led the global diversity strategy, equity, and compliance programs for a team of over 20,000 associates.
A Key Placement
“We are thrilled to have played an integral role in placing Shenece in this important role,” said Ms. MacCarthy. “It is a privilege to continue working with longstanding partners in identifying and placing exceptional talent, and I look forward to observing the future success that this key placement will bring to JCPenney.”
“Shenece brings an outstanding combination of skills to the company that highlight her strategic capabilities, leadership talents, and tactical proficiencies,” said Mr. Marchant. “She is accustomed to working with large and complex employee groups and will help drive the business forward to engage in meaningful ways with customers and associates throughout the organization.”
JCPenney Co. Inc., one of the nation’s largest apparel and home retailers, combines an expansive footprint of about 650 stores across the U.S. and Puerto Rico. The company has approximately 60,000 associates across the globe.
Founded in 1991 by Elaine Hughes, E.A. Hughes & Co. focuses on retail and consumer executive search. The firm serves clients in the retail and consumer apparel, home furnishings, beauty, digital, E-commerce, footwear, and other industries. E.A. Hughes is headquartered in New York City. In 2019, the firm was acquired by Solomon Page. “Elaine has influenced the careers of many senior executives in retail and fashion and advocated for women in the industry by example and involvement in many organizations during the past three decades,” said Sue Lamoreaux, managing director at Solomon Page, at the time.
Ms. MacCarthy has spent more than 20 years recruiting CEOs and other C-suite and VP-level executives for her clients across all channels of distribution. “People in the retail and consumer industry sectors she serves recognize that her ability to partner effectively is built on her insider experience as CHRO for Gestetner PLC and in senior HR positions at Sara Lee and U.S. Industries Apparel Group,” E.A. Hughes said.
Mr. Marchant is a seasoned executive search leader who brings more than 20 years of experience and leadership to the retail, fashion and consumer industries. He transitioned from a 15-year career in the retail industry to executive search based on his expertise across the retail enterprise and his approach to address the cultural and operating needs of his clients. He has experience recruiting across a broad range of disciplines including marketing, supply chain, merchandising, finance, operations, creative and sales. Mr. Marchant also has functional experience in the digital world in both E-commerce extensions of brick and mortar companies as well as pure-play organizations.
Kirk Palmer Associates Recruits Chief Marketing Officer for JCPenney
Retail-focused executive search firm Kirk Palmer Associates recently assisted in the recruitment of John Aylward as chief marketing officer of JCPenney. Partner Lindsay Stevens led the assignment. “The 120-year-old JCPenney brand is iconic. We must protect what the brand represents while evolving how it expresses who we are today,” said Marc Rosen, chief executive officer. “John will help fulfill our potential at this pivotal moment when JCPenney stands alone as a one-stop retailer. Additionally, John’s passion for purpose-driven work will be an important asset as we continue to provide offerings that promote inclusivity and celebrate the diversity of our customers.”
Last September, E.A. Hughes partnered with JCPenney in identifying and placing Andre Joyner as chief human resources officer. Ms. MacCarthy and Mr. Marchant led that assignment as well.
Mr. Joyner is responsible for the development and execution of strategic human capital decisions and lead the company’s human resources functions. He brings more than 20 years of innovative human resources and management experience in retail, healthcare, and consumer packaged goods industries to JCPenney. Most recently, he served as senior vice president, head of human resources at Victoria’s Secret where he led the brand through a significant organizational transformation.
Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor; and Stephen Sawicki, Managing Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media