Rethinking retail technology leadership

Four speakers to help you level up your IT leadership skills at NRF Retail Converge

From new payment technologies to artificial intelligence to automation, technology has helped retailers solve challenges they faced even before the COVID-19 pandemic disrupted the retail landscape. Today’s IT professionals and leaders play a vital role in inspiring retailers on new ways to use technology and guiding organizations through digital transformation and evolving consumer behaviors.

NRF’s new virtual show, NRF Retail Converge, is designed to give IT and retail technology professionals the skills they need to grow to the highest level of IT leadership. Ten NRF-curated sessions will build capabilities in leadership, communications and team-building, and introduce ideas, solutions, tools and tactics to educate and inspire future retail IT leaders.

Meet four IT leaders who are driving innovation and business strategy for their organizations.

Karen Etzkorn
Karen Etzkorn,
​​​​​​​CIO of Qurate Retail Group

Karen Etzkorn, Qurate Retail Group

When Karen Etzkorn became CIO at HSN, she had already held senior technology positions at major retail brands including Ascena Retail Group, The Home Depot, Williams-Sonoma and Gap. As CIO for Qurate Retail Group, Etzkorn leads a global team that plays a pivotal role in driving long-term growth, innovation and productivity for the parent organization that oversees brands such as HSN, QVC and Zulily.

At NRF Retail Converge, Etzkorn and Qurate Retail, Inc. President and Chief Executive Officer Mike George will discuss their professional relationship, why IT leaders should be an integral player in all board room discussions, and the importance of technology in the success of an expansive and multifaceted omnichannel operation.

Speaking in: Taking a seat at the table: IT leadership's influential role in business growth strategy

Janet Sherlock
Janet Sherlock,
​​​​​​​CIO of Ralph Lauren

Janet Sherlock, Ralph Lauren

As Ralph Lauren’s CIO, Janet Sherlock drives the company’s digital transformation and supports the company’s domestic growth and its strong international, online, omnichannel expansion. She and her team are responsible for the technology strategy and execution across the enterprise, including product design and development, supply chain, ecommerce, digital and store operations.

A passionate digital technology executive, Sherlock will join a panel of experts at NRF Retail Converge to discuss how the role of retail technology leaders has evolved and will continue to change as post-pandemic retail unfolds. She will also participate in a leadership session on how to attract, promote and retain diverse talent in retail technology careers.

Speaking in: Technology leadership vision: CIO/CTO challenges and opportunities in an accelerated world and Hacking diversity: How to retain talent when change is the only constant

Francesco Tinto, Walgreens Boots Alliance

Francesco Tinto
Francesco Tinto,
SVP, global CIO,
​​​​​​​Walgreens Boots Alliance

Francesco Tinto joined Walgreens Boots Alliance at a time when technology and innovation were particularly important to the company’s success. As senior vice president, global chief information officer, Tinto oversees the global strategy for WBA’s IT operations across all of the company’s divisions, as well as the implementation of its technology and digital innovation. His role includes data analytics, business intelligence, development, support, infrastructure, security and technical services.

A technology leader who has held leadership positions at Kraft Heinz Company, Kraft Foods and Procter & Gamble, Tinto will share his experiences and insights when he joins Janet Sherlock and other IT leaders for a panel discussion on the evolving role of retail technology leaders at NRF Retail Converge.

Speaking in: Technology leadership vision: CIO/CTO challenges and opportunities in an accelerated world

Suresh Kumar, Walmart

Suresh Kumar
Suresh Kumar, global CTO and CDO of Walmart

With more than 25 years of technology leadership experience at companies including Google, Microsoft, Amazon and IBM, Suresh Kumar has a unique understanding of the intersection of technology and retail. In his role as global CTO and chief development officer for Walmart, Kumar sets technical strategy, combining advances in computing with Walmart’s strengths to deliver the best customer experiences. As global CDO, he leads technology teams powering Walmart’s global businesses, including Walmart U.S., Sam’s Club and Walmart International.

At NRF Retail Converge, Kumar will talk about his mission to lead the next retail disruption and how he leveraged emerging tech and built custom products to accelerate Walmart’s digital transformation.

Speaking in: Technology that’s transforming retail: A fireside chat with Walmart's Global CTO and CDO​​​​​​​

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