Bolingbrook, Ill. — Ulta Beauty plans leadership changes to drive continuity and continued momentum, all effective in June. Dave Kimbell, president, will succeed Mary Dillon as chief executive officer and will be nominated to stand for election to the company’s board of directors at the 2021 annual stockholders meeting. Dillon will transition to the role of executive chair of the board of directors. Kecia Steelman, currently chief store operations officer, will be elevated to the role of chief operating officer.
“It has been the honor of my career to lead the Ulta Beauty family for the last 8 years,” says Dillon. “I believe now is the right time to begin a CEO transition. Dave is a world-class business leader with incredible passion, deep beauty expertise, unwavering drive and a values-based leadership style. The board, executive team and I could not be more thrilled to congratulate and support Dave as he takes this new role.”
Kimbell is highly regarded in the beauty industry and has been pivotal in developing and executing growth strategies to move the Ulta Beauty business forward. He joined Ulta Beauty as chief marketing officer in 2014 and continually expanded his leadership responsibilities, named chief merchandising and marketing officer in 2015 and ultimately assuming the role of president in 2019.
Kecia Steelman, the retailers’ current chief store operations officer, will assume the role of chief operating officer where she will oversee store and services operations, supply chain, Ulta Beauty at Target (pictured at left) and other key initiatives. Most recently, she led the unprecedented and fluid dynamics of store operations throughout 2020 through the lens of safety with steadfast resilience.
Dillon intends to serve as executive chair for a 1-year term and, with the board of directors, will continue to help guide strategy while supporting Kimbell in his transition. In her 8 years as CEO, Dillon doubled the retailers’ fleet of stores and significantly drove its e-commerce capabilities.
“Thanks to Mary’s outstanding leadership, the future is very bright at Ulta Beauty,” says Kimbell.
As part of this transition, Ulta Beauty’s current chair, Robert DiRomualdo, will retire from the board after serving 3 years in the role of chair and 17 years total on the board. Additionally, Lorna Nagler, who has served on the board since 2009, will become lead independent director working with Dillon in her executive chair role.
Kimbell and Steelman will continue to partner with an experienced and diverse executive team, which will be 60% women and 20% people of color. The Ulta Beauty executive team consists of Scott Settersten, chief financial officer; Jeff Childs, chief human resources officer; Jodi Caro, general counsel and chief compliance officer; Elliott Rodgers, chief information officer; Amiee Bayer-Thomas, chief supply chain officer; Shelley Haus, chief marketing officer; Monica Arnaudo, chief merchandising officer; and Prama Bhatt, chief digital officer.
All of these changes will take effect in June.
Ulta Beauty is the largest U.S. beauty retailer and the premier beauty destination for cosmetics, fragrance, skin care products, hair care products and salon services. It was founded in 1990.
SOURCE: Ulta Beauty