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Showing the Way

VM+SD announces its new editorial advisory board

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The exact birth date of VM+SD is in some disagreement, even inside the walls of our downtown Cincinnati office.

Many here cite the birth as 1922, the year ST Publications began publishing The Display World. Others (including me) honor 1894, when The Show Window: a Magazine for the Merchant began publication in New York and Chicago. (The two magazines ultimately merged in 1938 as Display World.)

Either way, this magazine has been around this industry a long time. And, like the industry, it has changed frequently in that time. It has changed titles, editors, staffs, columnists, how it's produced, how it looks graphically and how it approaches this profession.

Well, it is about to change again.

Who would have thought in the 1920s, when department stores were the embodiment of display, that one day we'd be reporting on what supermarkets were doing? In the 20s, they were grocery stores, and the only in-store novelty was at the point of sale, with signage and other materials supplied by Coca-Cola, Kellogg's, Lifebuoy soap.

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Who thought we'd be reporting on the consumer brand marketers? In the 1920s and 30s, brands marketed themselves on billboards, in magazines and newspapers and on the radio. The Arrow collar man cut a neat figure in The Saturday Evening Post, but he depended on Macy's or Sears to sell his product.

Who thought we'd be reporting on convenience stores? There wasn't any such notion as “convenience” then. They were called general stores, or five-and-dimes or just Woolworth's, and they were pretty bare-bones.

And, of course, “discounter” wasn't part of our vocabulary. Neither was “consumer electronics” (even counting the Philco in the parlor) or “specialty foods” or “big box.”

The point I'm trying to make is that retailing always changes, just as life and technology and conditions change. And today's VM+SD is a far cry from The Show Window or Display World or any of our other predecessors. We, too have changed with the times.

But now, we're enlisting some help. For the first time in this magazine's 82- or 110-year history, we're adding an Editorial Advisory Board to provide input, guide us where we need to be heading and generally participate in our magazine and trade shows. It's 50 persons strong, from all the various corners of this industry – visual merchandising, store planning, purchasing, store operations, creative services and plan development.

Our board represents all the various segments of the industry. It's a balance not simply of department stores and specialty apparel, but also of general merchandising, service retailing, hard goods, discounting, food, luxury and consumer brands. And there's a sizable component of architects, designers, consultants and educators.

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This board, as a group, is responsible for an aggregate of nearly 61,000 stores producing nearly $452 billion in annual sales. The design firms produce roughly 82.5 million square feet of retail a year.

By the way, in the 1920s Display World observed that women were having a hard time finding a place in this good-old-boy fraternity. Well, today women are a force in our industry and about a third of our new board is female.

Like the term “display” and hand-lettered signs, the good-old-boy network is history. Good riddance. Say hello to tomorrow.

Members:

* Chris Barriscale, creative officer, Fitch: RPA, San Francisco
* Cindy Bass, corporate manager – visual development, Kohl's
* Bevan Bloemendaal, senior director, global creative services, Timberland
* Michael Bodziner, principal, Gensler Architecture
* Bud Cope, senior vp, store development, Williams-Sonoma
* Tim Cox, director of creative services, Publix Super Markets
* Jim Darnell, manager, retail merchandising, H&R Block
* Christian Davies, vp, creative director, FRCH Design Worldwide
* Nancy Devine, group manager, Target
* Gary De George, vp, corporate merchandising manager, Wachovia Corp.
* Mollie Hansen, director of field & visual marketing, Adidas
* Kris Houlton, director of visual merchandising, Coach – Tokyo
* Paddy Karve, manager, architectural services, Borders Group Inc.
* Tom Kerekanich, visual director, American Signature Inc./Value City Furniture
* David Milne, director, store design & construction, apparel, Limited Brands
* John Mulliken, vp, store planning, LVMH Americas
* Lee Peterson, executive director, design group, WD Partners
* Stephanie Picone, director, visual merchandising, Chico's FAS
* Michele Ronsen, senior vp, retail store design and distribution, Bank of America
* Steve Toon, director, creative merchandising, Neiman Marcus
* Jan Tribbey, vp, planning and design, Aveda Corp.
* Paula Wagner, store development process manager, The Home Depot
* Mark Borosky, manager, building design and image, Sunoco Retail Engineering
* Tom Bowen, principal, Callison Architecture New York P.C.
* Stephen Bresler, director of merchandise presentation, Cracker Barrel Old Country Store
* Betty Bryan, director of visual merchandising, CompUSA
* Rick Burbee, creative director, Sears, Roebuck and Co.
* Kelly Christensen, director, visual operations, Gap/Old Navy
* Peter Dixon, senior partner, Lippincott Mercer
* Bruce Dybvad, president, Design Forum
* Rob Edgerly, visual merchandising director, Brookstone
* Scott Fedje, director of image design, Cole Haan* Eric Feigenbaum, department chair, visual merchandising, Laboratory Institute of Merchandising* Craig Hale, vp, national director of retail stores, Carter & Burgess
* Lynn Knutson, visual merchandising program manager, Harley-Davidson
* Jonathan Lander, director of visual merchandising, Nordstrom* David Liddle, director of visual merchandising, Apple
* Tracy Lindsey, director, ff&e purchasing and plan development, Wild Oats
* Karen Meskey-Wilson, vp, store planning and visual standards, JC Penney Co.
* Scott Meyer, divisional vp, store planning and design, Federated Department Store
* Sandie Pope, retail director, NBBJ Design
* Ken Pray, coordinator, store design, The Kroger Co.
* Mark Randall, director, fixtures, Best Buy
* Jose Raul Padron, global visual merchandising manager, Godiva Chocolatier
* Terri Roberts, casework program manager, Starbucks
* Kevin Roche, partner, RYA Design Consultancy
* Cathy Wereley, manager, purchasing department, Big Lots
* Steven Wilburn, senior director of stores, corp. visual merchandising, Saks Fifth Avenue
* Bink Zengel, senior design manager, Luxottica

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