Erika Simmons joins AATCC as new Technical Director

Erika Simmons, the new Technical Director at AATCC

Erika Simmons has been announced as the new Technical Director for AATCC.

Simmons has more than 20 years of experience in the Hanesbrands testing labs providing leadership and training, developing solutions, and launching new programs. As compliance manager, she led projects in quality management to meet customer compliance requirements and government regulatory mandates. Previously, Simmons held the position of quality manager at Fruit of the Loom and process engineer at Milliken.

Simmons has been active with AATCC committees and educational programs throughout her career. She served on the AATCC Executive Committee on Research and as Secretary and Chair of RA63—Water Resistance, Absorbency & Wetting Agent Evaluation. In addition, Simmons has provided instruction on moisture management at AATCC workshops.

Simmons has a degree in Textile Engineering from North Carolina State University and plans to complete a Master of Business Administration with Wake Forest University next Spring.

“I look forward to working with AATCC staff and committee members as we continue to deliver innovative solutions to meet the industry’s testing challenges,” said Simmons.

AATCC is the world’s leading not-for-profit association serving textile professionals since 1921. AATCC, headquartered in Research Triangle Park, N.C., USA, provides test method development, quality control materials, and professional networking for members in about 50 countries throughout the world.

Neiman Marcus turns to Ralph Lauren for its new President

The company’s management shuffle continues with its CFO departing.

By guest author Maria Halkias from Dallas News

Neiman Marcus said Tuesday, September 3, 2019 that it has hired a new President and Chief merchandising officer and is losing its chief financial officer.

Neiman Marcus CEO Geoffroy van Raemdonck spoke during a VIP party for the art exhibit “Dior: From Paris to the World” at the Dallas Museum of Art in Dallas earlier this year (caption courtesy by Dallas News)

Lana Todorovich, President of the North American wholesale operation of Ralph Lauren, will become the chain’s president and chief merchandising officer. She will fill a position left vacant in March with the departure of longtime Neiman Marcus executive Jim Gold.

Chief Financial Officer Adam Orvos’ tenure, which was less than 18 months, included a complex refinancing of the Dallas-based retailer’s debt.

Orvos is leaving in mid-October for another job that he isn’t able to disclose yet, according to Neiman Marcus. Orvos restructured the company’s USD 5 billion in debt, extending maturities out to October 2023 and giving Neiman Marcus CEO Geoffroy van Raemdonck more time to fashion a turnaround at the luxury retailer.

“Adam is doing what is best for his family and he has been extremely helpful to us,” van Raemdonck said in an interview. Orvos also has strong people reporting to him as chief operating officer, van Raemdonck said, and the company has started a search for his replacement.

Van Raemdonck, who also came to Neiman Marcus from Ralph Lauren, said he didn’t work directly with Todorovich. He was head of the apparel company’s European division before coming to Neiman Marcus in February 2017.

However, van Raemdonck said, he knew her and “was always impressed with her level of energy and how supportive of her teams she was, and they were supportive of her.”

From retailers, van Raemdonck said, “I would hear how she built win-win relationships.”

The two stayed in contact, and she was ready to help, he said. Todorovich understands that “there are very talented people here and that anyone new has to embrace our culture.”

Having someone with Todorovich’s experience on the vendor side will help the company work “to secure the best product and experience,” van Raemdonck said. “She understands the business from the vantage point of our brand partners, and it’s always very good to understand the other side of the conversation.”

Previously, Todorovich was president of women’s apparel at Global Brands Group and president at Perry Ellis International. She was also a senior vice president at Calvin Klein.

“I am honoured to join a company with such a storied history and even brighter future. The Neiman Marcus brand has always been the pinnacle of luxury,” Todorovich said in a statement.

She called it an exciting time to join the company and to be part of “a transformation that will make us more relevant to our customers, deliver more value to our partners and provide wonderful growth opportunities for our associates.”

Amazon poaches Asda’s legal chief

  • Amazon hires Asda’s general counsel and company secretary Alex Simpson
  • Simpson had advised Asda on its failed merger bid Sainsbury’s
  • Simpson’s appointment is expected to bolster Amazon’s ties to the UK grocery market
Alex Simpson

Amazon has appointed Asda’s general counsel and company secretary Alex Simpson, who advised the grocer on its merger bid with fellow Big 4 grocer Sainsbury’s.

Simpson’s appointment is expected to bolster Amazon’s ties to the UK grocery market as it works to gain market share with its Amazon Fresh online offering, Whole Foods acquisition and the anticipated launch of check out-free Amazon Go stores across the UK.

He has served at Asda for over eight years and has acted as the grocer’s general counsel and company secretary since 2013.

He was responsible for drawing up and offering legal advice on Sainsbury’s and Asda’s proposed merger, which was blocked by the Competition and Markets Authority in April.

Simpson is due to leave his role at Asda on September 12, 2019.

Michael Hengartner appointed new President of the Swiss ETH Board

On September 4, the Federal Council elected Michael Hengartner as the new president of the ETH Board, at the request of the head of the EAER Guy Parmelin. Michael Hengartner, 53, succeeds Fritz Schiesser, who stepped down from the post at the end of April. Mr Hengartner has been rector of the University of Zurich since 2014. He will take up his new post on 1 February next year. His responsibilities entail all ETH institutions and subsidiaries in Zurich and Lausanne. He is considered as a talented, also charming and winning communicator.

Michael Hengartner the newly elected President of the Swiss ETH, the Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich and Lausanne

Michael Hengartner was appointed rector of the University of Zurich in 2014. Since 2016, he has also served as president of swissuniversities. Mr Hengartner grew up in Québec City. He is a dual citizen of Switzerland and Canada. He studied biochemistry at the Université Laval in Québec City. After earning his PhD in 1994 at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology with Nobel Laureate H. Robert Horvitz, he was head of a research group at the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory in the United States until 2001. In 2001, he was appointed professor of molecular biology at the newly created Ernst Hadorn Chair at the Institute of Molecular Life Sciences at the University of Zurich. From 2009 to 2014, he acted as dean of the Faculty of Science.

Fritz Schiesser, Mr Hengartner’s predecessor, retired at the end of April. Beth Krasna, vice president of the ETH Board, has since served ad interim as president of the ETH Board, and will continue to do so until the end of January next year. Federal Councillor Guy Parmelin appointed a selection committee to find a successor to Mr. Schiesser. The position was widely advertised. A total of 29 candidates had applied for the post.