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Pay it Forward

VMSD celebrates strong female leaders for their efforts in paving the way for those who will follow in their footsteps

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As we were putting together this issue, which features the winners of VMSD’s first annual Top Women in Retail Design awards, it was hard to ignore the irony of the recent allegations of decades of predatory behavior by Hollywood film producer Harvey Weinstein. Witnessing the recent news unfold was a painful reminder of just how far we have to go in defining women’s roles in society and the workplace.

Though part of me hesitates to even mention the scandal, the optimist in me hopes that it clarifies the urgency of recognizing women leaders in not just this industry, but in every industry, and underscores the importance of supporting one another. If the number of #metoo posts I’ve seen in recent days on the social media pages of my friends and colleagues is any indication, there is still a significant amount of work to be done.

So as part of the effort to celebrate women of excellence in our field, we proudly introduce our first class of Top Women in Retail Design. Thank you to everyone who took the time to nominate a colleague you felt was worthy of consideration. We’re thrilled at the response we’ve received and hope that our winners will not only inspire you, but bring to the forefront their efforts in paving the way for those who follow.

Among the criteria that we considered in making our selections was a spirit of mentorship, because we believe that the act of sharing knowledge is both powerful and empowering, not just to mentees, but to mentors, as well. It’s clear that there is still much to be done. But for now, please take a moment and join us as we honor this exceptional first class of recipients. Congratulations to our winners!

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