3 Things to Know About Sperry’s New Global President

Barbara Schneider-Levy

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Joelle Grunberg has been tapped to lead the Sperry division of Wolverine World Wide Inc. as its new global president. The appointment coincides with the brand’s 85th anniversary this year.

Holding a top position is familiar to Grunberg. Most recently, she served as president and CEO of North and Central America for Lacoste, a position she was named to in 2015, after serving as CEO of Lacoste’s French business in 2013.

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“Joelle is a seasoned leader with skills in global, consumer-focused businesses and deep expertise in fashion, apparel, footwear and accessories,” said Blake W. Krueger, chairman, CEO and president of Wolverine Worldwide. “She is an excellent addition to our team and we are excited to see Sperry’s direction under her leadership.”

What prepared her for the job:

At Lacoste, she was responsible for retail stores, ecommerce, wholesale, regional product development and all regional support functions in North and Central America. She previously worked for the Celio Group Inc., Louis Pion-Royal Quartz, McKinsey & Company and Ernst & Young.

The support system she received along her career journey:

Grunberg, whose background includes serving as CEO of a jewelry business, credits her father and husband, a former CEO himself, for encouraging her to take big career risks. At the 2019 FN/Two Ten WIFI Women Who Rock event in New York, she said of her first gig in the C-suite: “I got the job, but I had no CEO experience. It was very difficult for me because I was advising people who had more experience than I had.” Eventually, of course, Grunberg navigated her way through the post and has landed several huge roles since.

How she’s paving the way for other female executives.

Recently, she was named as one of the top 20 female executives in the retail industry by the Women in Retail Leadership Circle, a community of women executives at leading retailers and brands.

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