NEW YORK — Polo Ralph Lauren Corp. named Barbara Kennedy president of dresses, a new post.

Kennedy joined Polo from Jones Apparel Group, where she spent 15 years, most recently as president of the better and moderate dress divisions. Before that, she held senior posts in retail, including merchandise vice president and divisional merchandise manager of dresses, coats, suits and special size sportswear at Bloomingdale’s, and vice president and merchandise administrator at Macy’s.

At Polo, Kennedy initially will be in charge of running the women’s dress business for Lauren and Chaps, though her responsibilities are not exclusive to these two divisions. The dress business will be new to Chaps, which is manufactured in an exclusive agreement with Kohl’s, though the launch date hasn’t been determined yet. Lauren, the better line, has had dresses, but Polo is expected to make a bigger push under Kennedy’s leadership. She will report to Jacki Nemerov, executive vice president of wholesale brands, licensing and manufacturing.

This story first appeared in the January 3, 2007 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

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