Mickey Drexler Retires From Chairman Role At J.Crew

Former J.Crew CEO Millard “Mickey” Drexler has retired as Chairman of the retailer, effective immediately. He will continue to serve as a strategic advisor to the Office of the CEO and the board, and will be succeeded in the Chairman role by Chad Leat.

Drexler stepped down as CEO in July 2017, two week after admitting that he underestimated the role technology would play in retail in an interview with The Wall Street Journal. He was replaced by James Brett, who left the CEO position in November 2018 — shortly before the retailer released positive comparable sales growth of 4% in Q3 2018, up from a 13% drop in Q3 2017.


Drexler joined J.Crew as CEO in 2003, and founded Madewell in 2006. He also launched Drexler Ventures to invest in and advise emerging brands, with clients including Outdoor Voices and Warby Parker.

“It’s been a privilege to have had more than 15 years with J.Crew Group both as CEO and chairman of the board,” said Drexler in a statement. “J.Crew and Madewell have been long admired as iconic American brands, and I am thankful to have been a part of their evolution throughout the years. I look forward to working with the Office of the CEO and the board as a strategic advisor to help support J.Crew’s long term success.”

Leat is a retired Vice Chairman of Global Banking At Citigroup with nearly 30 years of markets and banking experience. He plans to build on J.Crew’s recent momentum and work to grow Madewell into a billion-dollar brand.

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