Designer Brands adds Rich Paul and Tami Fersko to its Board as Independent Directors

– USA, OH –  Designer Brands Inc. (NYSE: DBI), one of the world’s largest designers, producers, and retailers of the most recognizable footwear and accessories, today announced the appointments of Rich Paul and Tami Fersko to its Board as Independent Directors, effective immediately.

Ms. Fersko has also joined the Audit Committee and the Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee.

“As Designer Brands continues the next phase of its growth, I am thrilled to have Rich and Tami join our Board,” said Board Chairman, Jay Schottenstein. “Both bring extensive brand-building expertise and knowledge of the footwear industry to the table, competencies that will help us on our path to doubling sales of our Owned Brands. Rich’s place at the epicenter of culture as well as his vast knowledge of the sports industry will complement our athletic and athleisure strategy, while helping to continue attracting new and different consumers to Designer Brands. Additionally, Tami’s broad background in supply chain and operations will reinforce our efforts to be nimble and agile as we seek to consistently provide the best brands in footwear.”

CEO, Roger Rawlins added, “I am excited that Designer Brands is adding Rich and Tami’s expertise to our Board. They bring a wealth of experience in areas directly applicable to our brand-building journey and I look forward to working with them as we move this vision forward.”

About Rich Paul

Rich Paul is the CEO and founder of KLUTCH Sports Group, the powerhouse agency representing some of the biggest athletes across major professional sports. Paul founded KLUTCH Sports in 2012 in his hometown of Cleveland, Ohio, where he forged a unique and personal approach to representing top NBA talent – putting athletes first and empowering them to build careers and brands on and off the court. Paul also serves as United Talent Agency’s Head of Sports and is an agency partner, and was appointed to UTA’s Board of Directors in 2020.

In 2019, Rich Paul was named GQ’s “PowerBroker of the Year” and “The King Maker” on the cover of Sports Illustrated. In 2021, TIME recognized KLUTCH Sports on its first-ever list of TIME100 Most Influential Companies. Variety recently named Paul to their “Variety500” list of the most influential business leaders shaping the global media industry. Paul is also credited with driving the reversal of the so-called “Rich Paul Rule,” which would have banned agents without a college degree from representing NCAA student-athletes.

In 2021, Paul and three former Nike executives formed a company called ADOPT, a creative agency focused on sports, wellness, nutrition, tech, and other consumer-facing products. Paul joined the Board of Trustees of LACMA and the Board of Directors of Funko in 2022. Paul is also a minority partner of The SpringHill Company.

About Tami J. Fersko

Tami Fersko currently serves as the Chief Operations and Supply Chain Officer for Centric Brands, a global leading lifestyle brand collective. Previously, Ms. Fersko served as President, of LF Americas, a division of Li & Fung Limited, a $10 billion Hong Kong-based global supply chain corporation encompassing dual-gender, multi-classification private label portfolio servicing department store, mass, club, and off-price channels. The scope of her responsibilities spanned sales, design, merchandising, sourcing, operations, finance, and licensing/M&A. Her key accounts included Walmart, Costco, Target, Land’s End, Macy’s, Kohl’s, and Amazon. Ms. Fersko managed a team of 250 professionals across six countries.

Before her role at Li & Fung, Ms. Fersko was EVP, Finance, and Operations of The Jones Group, where she managed a team of more than 100 finance and operations professionals, and was responsible for management reporting, M&A/divestitures, five-year strategic plan, annual budgeting process, monthly forecasting, retail planning/allocation, inventory purchasing controls, and licensee contract negotiations.

Ms. Fersko is a graduate of the State University of New York at Buffalo.

About Designer Brands

Designer Brands is one of the world’s largest designers, producers, and retailers of the most recognizable footwear brands and accessories. It transforms and defines the footwear industry by inspiring self-expression across every facet of its enterprise. Through its portfolio of world-class owned brands, led by the industry-setting Vince Camuto brand, Designer Brands delivers on-trend footwear and accessories through its robust direct-to-consumer omnichannel infrastructure, featuring a billion-dollar digital commerce business and nearly 650 stores across the U.S. and Canada. Its retailing operations under the DSW Designer Shoe Warehouse and The Shoe Company banners deliver current, in-line footwear and accessories from most of the largest national brands in the industry and hold leading market share positions in key product categories across Women’s, Men’s, and Kid’s in the U.S. and Canada. Designer Brands also distributes its owned brands through select wholesale relationships while leveraging its design and sourcing expertise to build private-label products for national retailers. Designer Brands is also committed to being a difference maker in the world, taking steps forward to advance diversity, equity, and inclusion in the footwear industry and supporting our global community and the health of our planet through donating more than six million pairs of shoes to the global non-profit Soles4Souls.

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