South O’ the Highway

Calvin Klein Welcomes New CEO Cheryl Abel-Hodges

His iconic brand is in good hands.

Southampton’s Calvin Klein will once again watch the CEO of his namesake fashion brand change. Last week, PVH Corp., the apparel company that owns Tommy Hilfiger, Van Heusen, Speedo, IZOD and Calvin Klein, announced that Steve Shiffman has stepped down to pursue other interests, making way for Cheryl Abel-Hodges to take the reins.

The new CEO has worked with PVH since 2006 and has held a number of leadership roles at the company—including Group President of Calvin Klein North America and The Underwear Group—culminating in her latest promotion. PVH Corp. CEO and chairman Emanuel Chirico sings Abel-Hodges’ praises in the release. “Her strong management abilities, together with her consistent track record for operational excellence, will provide strong direction for the Calvin Klein team,” he says. “I believe this leadership change, coupled with our incredible management teams around the world, will allow us to capture the brand’s long-term growth potential.”

The successful Calvin Klein brand wouldn’t be here today were it not for Klein’s lifelong passion and dedication. After attending a high school specializing in art and design, he graduated from the Fashion Institute of Technology with a degree in fine arts. Following a rapid rise to fame after the first Calvin Klein fashion show in April 1970, Klein’s brand became ubiquitous in the high-brow, minimalist fashion world. In the 1980s, the label became known for its show-stopping advertisements, which featured supermodels wearing little more than a pair of jeans or briefs.

The New York Times reports that when Klein sold the company to Phillips-Van Heusen in 2002, he received $400 million in cash along with $30 million in stock and up to $300 million in royalties. Under the new regime, the brand has expanded to offer a line of sportswear in addition to the requisite fragrances, denim and underwear that originally made Calvin Klein a household name.

Watching your life’s work evolve and move forward without you must be difficult, but there is no better place to do so than from a luxurious oceanside home in the Hamptons.

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