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2022 Business Workshop

The Accessories Council hosted it’s 8th annual ‘Business Workshop’ on November 10th 2022! The business workshop was created to inspire, inform and provide ideas to help our companies endure our ever-changing retail environment.

Thank you to our sponsors: FashionGo, Hearst, LIM College and Ometria

Allan Ellinger

The public face of the leading middle market investment banking firm MMG, Allan Ellinger is the consummate industry insider and effective networker with over fifty years of powerful and trusted relationships throughout consumer products companies and retail brands in the fashion and its many related industries including apparel, footwear, accessories, and home.

Allan provides merger and acquisition counsel and strategic business advice to numerous owners and CEOs of fashion and consumer products companies. Allan’s client and industry relationships include, include among many others, Intradeco Apparel (current Board member), Li & Fung, Centric Brands (formerly GBG), G-III, Randa, PEI, The Peyser Family (Weatherproof), Komar Industries, The Adjmi Family, the Dabah Family, The Tharanco Group, Greg Norman, Byer California, United Legwear, The Forum Group and PEI (Perry Ellis). Allan has unparalleled relationships with the banking and professional community that supports the fashion consumer products industry.

Having started his career in the men’s apparel industry, Allan draws on his diverse industry experience to lead the firm. His broad expertise in the fashion industry includes sales and marketing, manufacturing and international sourcing, financial planning, corporate and trade finance, organizational development, corporate infrastructure, and domestic and international licensing. He has been instrumental in building and evolving the practice from its initial turnaround/restructuring emphasis to one of the pre-eminent full-service M&A firms servicing the fashion and consumer products sector. Since 1989, Allan and the firm have been involved in more than 1,500 engagements.

Prior to building MMG, Allan was President/CEO of Basco All American Sportswear; President of multiple divisions of Bidermann Industries; a Founder and Partner in Alan Flusser Inc.; and a Corporate Vice President/Assistant to the Chairman at Intercontinental Apparel.

As an active fashion insider, Allan is a passionate advocate of social responsibility. He is the Founder and former Chairman of Fashion Delivers which in 2013 merged with K.I.D.S., a charity founded in 1984, to form Delivering Good. Allan was Chairman of the merged charities through 2018 and still is highly active on Delivering Good’s Executive Committee. He has also served on the Board of Big Brothers Big Sisters of New York City’s Accountants & Bankers Division and Fashion Division of UJA Federation of New York. He was the honored by both Big Brothers and Big Sisters and UJA Federation for his philanthropic work. He has taught courses and lectured at fashion colleges and universities and has authored numerous articles regarding the state of the apparel industry.

Brett Fialkoff
Deborah Metts

Deborah is a Fashion Tech co-founder, a global educator, brand storyteller, and leading technologist with 10+ years of experience both from the Marketing and the E-commerce side of luxury retail branding. Her specialties include Management at startup companies, Innovation, Software as a Service (SaaS), SaaS Operations, high availability, and scalability. She’s worked with some of the world’s most recognized fashion and retails brands such as Bloomingdales, Calvin Klein, IMG, Max Mara, Macy’s, and Nicole Miller. Deborah regularly speaks at fashion tech events throughout the world and has recently discussed her views with media outlets such as Nasdaq, Gals Talk Tech and Forward-Thinking Founders. She has a BBA from Georgia Southern University and a MFA in Fashion Merchandising from the Academy of Art University.

Frank Zambrelli

Frank Zambrelli is a design and branding chief executive, educator, and sustainability expert with extensive professional experience spanning fashion and retail, and the environmental, social and governance (ESG) implications therein. After more than a decade working for world-class brands, he began the award-winning studio, Design Quadrant, and launched the NYC-based, sustainable luxury brand, 1 Atelier. His extension into academia nearly over decade ago was inspired by a desire to better knit the changing demands of industry to curricula.

Additionally, Frank leads the Responsible Business Coalition at Fordham University’s Gabelli School of Business, supporting the cross-sector collaboration of industry and education to reduce environmental and social impacts – driving toward a future that considers people, planet and profit.

His broad-spectrum experience has followed the pulse of change in the fashion industry, where his work has been instrumental in the success of companies for over 15 years, a roster including Chanel, Calvin Klein, Coach, and many others. He’s a culture creator - whether shaping start-ups for long-term growth or short-term sale – or leveraging his experience to redirect global brands toward more sustainable and regenerative futures.

In Frank’s latest venture he co-leads the ESG retail practice within Accenture, the multinational professional services company, shaping strategy, digital technology and operations through the lens of sustainability and a more responsible future.

A familiar face in digital, broadcast and print media, and on panels discussing responsible business and the acceleration of ESG, his latest work focuses on guiding industries in disruption toward a more equitable and regenerative future in a digitally rebalanced business environment.

Frank holds a Bachelor of Science degree from FIT, and a Master of Science from Glasgow Caledonian.

Isabella Mckeon

Isabella has a diverse range of sales leadership experience scaling SaaS sales teams at companies like Suzy, Wonder, and Shoptiques.com. She is passionate about helping brands better connect and engage with their customers in effective and meaningful ways and currently leads Ometria’s North American Sales Team. 

Katie Hickey

Katie Hickey is the Senior Marketing Manager at Ometria. She has a strong passion for connecting people and products through technology. Katie has published articles for Hubspot, RetailDive, and Digiday and has worked with brands like PUMA,Yeti and Hibbett Sports. Previously, Katie worked at SurveyMonkey where led GTM for their CX product known as "GetFeedback".

Liza Amlani

Liza is a retail industry veteran and the go to expert in retail merchandising, product creation, and accelerating speed to market.

A respected voice on on topics such as responsible retail and sustainability, retail diversity and inclusion, the future of retail, Liza is a regular contributor to RetailWire, Bloomberg, Wall Street Journal, Forbes, Footwear News and the Sourcing Journal.

In a career spanning 20+ years, Liza has worked with familiar brands including Holt Renfrew, Ralph Lauren Europe and Canada, Club Monaco, Nike, Walmart, and several others from product creation to buying and merchandising. In fact, she started her career in designing and buying accessories.

Liza is currently the Principal at Retail Strategy Group - a consulting practice which helps companies in the retail space dramatically improve profitability and increase organizational effectiveness. Liza has just been named one of RETHINK Retail’s Top Influencer of 2022 and you can find her on all social platforms under @themerchantlife. Follow her on LinkedIn for her POV on all things retail from a retail insider.

Marshal Cohen

Marshal Cohen, chief industry advisor of The NPD Group, Inc., is a nationally known expert on consumer behavior and the retail industry. He has followed retail trends for more than 30 years, at NPD and as the head of leading fashion and apparel manufacturers as well as major retailers. As part of his work at NPD, Marshal leads many top firms in long-range and strategic-planning sessions. He often utilizes motivational presentations to help launch corporate goals and kick-off meetings. Marshal is the author of two books, Why Customers Do What They Do (2006) and Buy Me! How to Get Customers to Choose Your Products and Ignore the Rest (2010).

In addition to his duties at NPD, Marshal is a member of several boards of directors and has most recently been appointed to the Cotton Board and American Apparel and Footwear Association (AAFA). He is also a guest professor at North Carolina State University, School of Textiles. There, he introduces students and faculty to techniques for analyzing and applying data. Marshal has been a guest lecturer at the Wharton School of Business, the Fashion Institute of Technology, and Savannah College of Art and Design. He has also been twice named to the Footwear News Power 100 list.

Marshal is also a regular contributor to many major media outlets. He is frequently quoted in publications like The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, andWomen’s Wear Daily. Additionally, he appears on various television news programs, including “Today,” “Good Morning America,” and “CBS Sunday Morning,” and has been a regular guest on Bloomberg TV and Radio. He is also a sought-after speaker at key industry events such as MAGIC, The Fairchild CEO Summits, The National Retail Federation’s (NRF) Annual Convention, and The American Apparel and Footwear Association’s (AAFA) Annual Executive Summit. Recently, Marshal was the only industry expert who appeared in the documentary, “God Save my Shoes,” (godsavemyshoes.com), produced by Caid Productions.

Since joining NPD in 1999, Marshal has held a variety of positions analyzing and interpreting NPD’s uniquely combined consumer and point-of-sale tracking services for the apparel, footwear, accessories, and sports industries. His career began in the training program at Bloomingdale’s, where he worked his way up to merchandise manager. From there, he became president of WilliWear and subsequently president of Stanley Blacker. He was also founder, owner, and president of Motive Marketing Group.

Mary Ann Domuracki

Mary Ann Domuracki brings strategic consulting and transaction advisory experience to a broad range of international clients in the consumer and retail sectors. Her experience includes mergers and acquisitions, including cross border transactions and special situations both in and out of court, capital raising and strategic planning.

During her career, Mary Ann also had operational and management roles including positions as President of Danskin, Inc. and EVP of Kasper A.S.L. as well as advisory experience with Financo and Ernst and Young.

Mary Ann’s past client experience includes Wacoal’s acquisition of Lively and Eveden, Shanghai Shenda’s Acquisition of Perfect Fit (won the 8th M&A International Corporate & Strategic Acquisition of the Year ), sale of Camuto Group to Designer Brands & Authentic Brands Group, sale of J.Hilburn to TAL, John Varvatos sale to Lion Capital, Foster Grant’s reorganization, Kasper’s acquisition of Anne Klein, Tumi’s capital raise, Li & Fung’s acquisition of Oxford’s women’s business, Gottschalks’ reorganization, Haskell Jewels’ sale to Centric Brands, Rafaella’s sale to Perry Ellis, as well as the likes of Wilsons Leather, Whitehall Jewelers, Samuels Jewelers, Linens n’ Things, and Delia’s.

Mary Ann is on the Board of The Retail Marketing Society, the Advisory Board for LIM College, the TMA and it’s Committee to judge the annual TMA award winners, and a member of the American Apparel & Footwear Association. She is a frequent speaker including ACG’s forum on M&A and the Debtwire Debt Forum. She was named one of the 2020 Most Influential Women in Mid-Market M&A.

Mary Ann co-founded the DealmakeHers, an exclusive network of female dealmakers and leaders in the consumer and retail industry.

Mary Ann has a Bachelor of Business Administration degree from Pennsylvania State University with a concentration in accounting. She is a CPA and holds FINRA Series 7, 63, and 79.

Sandra Campos
Stephen I. Sadove

Between January 2002 and November 2013, Stephen I. Sadove held positions of increasing responsibility with Saks Incorporated. In January 2002, Sadove joined the management team of Saks as Vice Chairman. In March 2004, he assumed the additional post of Chief Operating Officer of the Company and in January 2006 he assumed the position of Chief Executive Officer. He held the post of Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Saks between May 2007 and November 2013. In November 2013, Saks Incorporated was sold to Hudson’s Bay.

Prior to joining Saks, Sadove built a distinguished marketing and consumer products career spanning over 25 years. Between 1975 and 1991, Sadove held various positions of increasing responsibility with General Foods (now Kraft Heinz), including Executive Vice President and General Manager of the Desserts, as well as Meals Divisions.

Sadove joined Bristol-Myers Squibb Company in 1991 as President of Clairol. In 1994, he was appointed President, Worldwide Clairol, having direct responsibility for the Clairol business in the United States as well as all of the consumer businesses in Canada, Europe, the Middle East, Africa, and Latin America. In 1996, he was appointed to the post of President, Bristol-Myers Squibb Worldwide Beauty Care, with responsibility for Clairol Worldwide and Matrix Essentials. In 1997, he was appointed President, Bristol-Myers Squibb Worldwide Beauty Care and Nutritionals, adding Mead Johnson Nutritionals to his duties.

During his tenure at Bristol-Myers Squibb, Sadove led Clairol to become the number one hair care business in the United States, relaunched the Herbal Essences brand into a $700 million business, and completed the sale of the beauty care business to Procter & Gamble. During this period he also served as Chairman of what is now the Personal Care Products Council.

Sadove is a graduate of Hamilton College and holds an MBA with distinction from Harvard Business School. He is also a recipient of Honorary Doctorates from LIM College and Hamilton College. He currently serves on the public company boards of Aramark (Chairman), Colgate-Palmolive (lead director), Park Hotels and Resorts and Movado. He is a former Chair of the National Retail Federation and serves as an advisor to Mastercard as well as serving on numerous community and civic boards including Hamilton College and AmeriCares. He is also a founding partner of JW Levin Management Partners, a Private Equity firm.

Tony Drockton

After earning his MBA, Tony spent over a decade managing successful businesses in construction, real estate, and home finance sectors. In search of a venture that celebrated his creative passions, Tony took the reins at Hammitt in 2008, overseeing its transformation from a best-kept hometown secret to a digital and retail phenomenon. Tony is a philanthropist, speaker, mentor, and lifelong entrepreneur, but mostly, he loves experiencing the zest and wonder of life.

Tom Hyde

Tom Hyde is VP of Strategy at creative agency Movers+Shakers, the #1 fastest-growing agency in the world, and Ad Age’s “Best Small Agency of the Year, Silver.” AdWeek called them “the best agency in the world at creating campaigns on TikTok.”

At Movers+Shakers, Tom specializes in connecting brands to culture, pushing innovation, and driving unprecedented brand love among Gen Z and Millennials. Prior to Movers+Shakers, Tom has led Strategy departments at agencies in London, Melbourne and New York, creating award-winning work for brands such as Converse, Google, Calvin Klein & Coca-Cola. His thinking has been featured in Fast Company, AdAge, Creativity and WIRED.