Passing the Baton

James Brett (Questrom ’91) named chief executive of J. Crew as Millard Drexler (Questrom ’68) steps down.

At J. Crew, two Questrom alumni pass the baton.

Millard Drexler (Questrom ’68), chief executive of J. Crew, steps down as James Brett (Questrom ’91) steps up.

Drexler will keep his ownership stake in the company and also will remain chairman as Brett, president of the modern home furnishing company, West Elm, succeeds Drexler beginning in July.

Drexler, known as “Mickey”, is remembered for riding his bicycle around the office and bringing his energy and creativity to all his ideas since he joined J. Crew in 2003. Prior to this he was known for creating the 1990’s button-down shirt and khaki pant fashion trend, which came out of his 18-year run with Gap.

West Elm, the company that’s become a success among millennials, has reported strong growth since Brett was named its president. The brand’s pushing to several other markets next year, boutique hotels are on that expansion list.

Brett, who previously worked for brands like Urban Outfitters, Anthropologie, and J.C. Penney, will also be responsible for J. Crew’s sister brand, Madewell, which was a creation of Drexler’s.


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