By  on April 12, 2005

NEW YORK — Two years after Ellen Tracy’s founding designer and creative director, Linda Allard, retired, Ellen Tracy has named George Collins Sharp as vice president of design.

In the newly created post, Sharp, 44, will direct the brand’s design efforts, from sportswear to licensed categories such as fragrance, handbags, jewelry, footwear, scarves and hosiery.

Since Allard left the division of Liz Claiborne Inc., the brand has been quietly putting together by a design team, which will now report to Sharp. “We had really been contemplating this since Linda’s retirement, but it took a while until we found a perfect match,” Glenn McMahon, president of Ellen Tracy, said.

Previously, Sharp was the head designer at Escada, which he joined in 2001. He has now relocated to New York from Munich, where Escada is based. He will oversee the design of the Linda Allard Ellen Tracy sportswear collection and its licensed categories. The Scottish native reports to McMahon.

“There won’t be a black-and-white change,” McMahon said of the hire. “But it will continue to evolve, which we need to do to make it a relevant brand for the next 50 years. His input will be really important to our future.”

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