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Sue Rechner, who spent 10 years as CEO of Confluence Outdoor, has been named president of Merrell. She has a long history of building brands in the outdoor industry, and was president and director of Victorinox Swiss Army, Inc., before joining Confluence.
“After conducting an extensive search, we are excited to bring Sue to Wolverine Worldwide and Merrell – our largest brand with great global potential,” said Blake Krueger, chairman, CEO, and president of Wolverine Worldwide in a press release issued Monday. “Sue is a seasoned veteran and experienced brand builder, I am confident she will have a strong impact on the Merrell brand and its continued growth.”
Rechner left Confluence Outdoor in February, saying she felt it was time to move on. She built the once-struggling brand into a critical source for paddlesports equipment, and one of the “most important partners” for retailers like Rutabaga Paddlesports, whose owner, Darren Bush, is now spearheading the first-ever Paddlesports Retailer.
“Paddlesports is losing a great leader,” Bush said at the time.
At Merrell, Rechner will answer to Todd Spaletto, president of Wolverine Worldwide’s lifestyle and outdoor groups. Spaletto joined the company recently, after leaving his post as president of The North Face.
“Sue has a consistent track record of building brands and delivering growth in the outdoor industry,” Spaletto said in a press release about her appointment. “Merrell is an iconic brand and is the perfect fit for Sue’s leadership and experience.”