LONDON — Thomas O’Neill has been appointed  chairman of The Clarks Group, the British footwear firm said Thursday. His appointment is effective immediately.

This story first appeared in the December 6, 2013 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

O’Neill, who is already a non-executive director on the company’s board, succeeds Peter Davies, who the firm said had reached the end of his term in the chairman’s role. O’Neill is a veteran of the retail landscape, having served as ceo of Harry Winston and as president of the Harry Winston Diamond Corp. from 2004 through 2010. He also served as worldwide president for Burberry from 2001 through 2004 and has held senior roles at LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton, Marc Jacobs and Tiffany & Co.

Melissa Potter, ceo at The Clarks Group, commented: “[O’Neill’s] extensive experience working with global retail brands in the USA, Europe and Asia, combined with his in-depth knowledge of the Clarks business made him a natural choice for the role of chairman.”