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Retail Briefs

Mervyn's Hires Dever

Mid-tier department store chain Mervyn's, which in late July filed for Bankruptcy under Chapter 11 protection, has hired Jane Dever as its new vp, dmm of home. She replaces Michael Rotar, who earlier was promoted to director of e-commerce. Dever was formerly vp, dmm of home furnishings for Macy's North (formerly Marshall Fields).

Rein of Walgreens to Join JCP Board

JCPenney has named Jeffrey Rein of drug store giant Walgreens to its board of directors, effective Dec. 9. Rein has been with Walgreens for 27 years, starting as an assistant manager in 1982, and ultimately promoted to ceo in 2006 and chairman in 2007.

Myron Ullman, chairman and ceo of JCP, said, "We look forward to Jeff's contributions to our board as we focus on gaining market share within the current environment and executing our long-term plans for growth leadership in the retail industry."

Martha to help fete Macy's 150th birthday

Martha Stewart and her business partner chef Emeril Lagasse will co-host an Oct. 24 cocktail gala in New Orleans, where two new stores will open as part of the Macy's 150th anniversary celebration this month.

As with most of the related events, fashion designers and style icons will be highly visible at the gala: Tommy Hilfiger, Steve Madden, Russell Simmons and others will attend.

Special events will be held chainwide on Oct. 25. The Herald Square flagship store will hold its gala on the exact founding day, Oct. 28.

Events started rolling last week, as TV celebrities joined in the Macy's Passport Celebrity Catwalk Challenge, which aired on NBC the evening of Saturday, Oct. 11, hosted by Tori Spelling. The Macy's Passport fashion show will appear in theaters in 27 cities around the U.S. on Oct. 23, as an all-proceeds fundraiser for local HIV/AIDS organizations, the retailer said.

"There are very few brands today that can claim the longevity and legacy of ours, and I am endlessly proud to be at the helm of such a dynamic and beloved American institution," said Terry Lundgren, chairman, president and ceo of Macy's, Inc.

Pier 1 Names Benkel Top Planner

Home furnishings specialty retailer Pier 1 Imports has hired Michael Benkel as svp for planning and allocations. With more than 18 years of retail experience, Benkel was most recently vp of inventory management for Pottery Barn Retail Stores; he previously was director, inventory management there for the home furnishings and furniture divisions. Prior to his 11 years at Pottery Barn, he was a buyer at Macy's.

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