Stephanie Linnartz on Becoming Under Armour’s First Woman CEO

After a 25-year career at Marriott International Inc., Linnartz took the helm at Under Armour this winter as the company’s first woman CEO.

With her new role, the exec is on a mission to empower the women around her.

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“In every area of life, women have had to ride on the coattails of the great women who went before us. It is my responsibility to hold the doors open and elevate those who come after me. This is even more important now,” she said, noting that she is the first woman to run any major sports apparel or footwear brand. “It is critical to create communities of support and ensure that we invest talent and time in cultivating relationships that encourage growth.”

While championing colleagues, mentoring and sharing her experiences with the next generation within the workplace is top of mind, Linnartz also remains focused on winning over more female consumers at Under Armour.

She said, “There is a huge opportunity to improve on the products we offer and the way we engage with our women consumers, which I am really excited about. I want our women athletes to feel confident, strong and capable on their journey to compete and I want to celebrate their dedication and grit.”

This article appeared in the June 5 print issue of FN, as part of the “Women Who Rock” special section. This annual feature celebrates female leaders who are shaking up the footwear industry with vision and tenacity. And on June 7, FN and Two Ten Footwear Foundation will also honor these women at a live event in New York City, benefiting Two Ten’s WIFI scholarship.

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