By  on February 16, 2010

NEW YORK — Sears Holdings Corp. on Monday named Tara Poseley senior vice president and president of Kmart Apparel.

Poseley, who will be based in the company’s San Francisco apparel offices, will be responsible for the oversight, leadership and strategic growth of Kmart’s apparel business, in stores and online. A spokeswoman said the position has been vacant. The last person to hold it was Kim McClaren, an executive of Gap’s defunct Forth & Towne brand.

Poseley will inherit decades-old apparel brands such as Jaclyn Smith, which was rejuvenated in 2008. Other long-running brands include Route 66, Covington, Apostrophe and Joe Boxer. Kmart in the fall launched Thre3 by the U.S. Polo Association, and Glo, a jeans collection for juniors from Jones Apparel Group, bowed in January.

Prior to joining Kmart, Poseley was president of Bebe Sport, where she created a new retail concept, PH8, to replace Bebe Sport stores in the U.S. and Canada.

Poseley’s background includes leading business launches, developing Web sites and introducing social networking to retailers. Before joining Bebe Sport, Poseley was president of Disney Stores, North America, a division of The Children’s Place. Prior to that, she was president and chief executive officer of Design Within Reach.

Poseley began her career at Gap Inc. as a merchant trainee. She spent 15 years with the company, holding positions including senior vice president of GapKids and babyGap, and played a key role in the launch of GapBody.

“[Tara] is an accomplished leader and merchant with whom I have worked previously,” said John Goodman, Kmart’s executive vice president of home and apparel. “She brings to the company excellent product development and brand management experience and a demonstrated success in creating and inspiring high-performance teams that are focused on satisfying the customer.”

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