Ginger Reeder, vice president of corporate communications at Neiman Marcus and a 21-year veteran of the Dallas-based luxury retailer, will officially retire on Friday.
In addition to serving as spokeswoman for Neiman’s, Reeder was responsible for finding the often outrageous and ridiculously pricey fantasy gifts for the retailer’s annual Christmas catalogue. “It has been a great run,” Reeder said Monday. “I’ve had great teams who helped me discover many fantasy gifts over the years.”
Reeder worked closely with Neiman’s leadership including former chief executive officer Burt Tansky as well as the current ceo Karen Katz. She often assisted top executives at the corporate office through crisis management such as Neiman’s data breach two years ago, as well as issues at the local level, such as children reported lost or customers bringing their pets into fitting rooms and making other customers uneasy.
She worked closely with the finance division, legal team and human resources to oversee media strategy for two acquisitions; drove the external communications strategy and communication with customers, and prepared the chief technology officer for testimony before the Senate after Neiman’s suffered the data breach. She also oversaw changes in the corporate charitable-giving strategy, which had not changed since 1907, and developed ideas and opportunities for feature articles and interviews. During Neiman’s 110-year history, only three other individuals have held the same position that Reeder did: Stanley Marcus, Tom Alexander and Carolyn Cobb.
Reeder started her career in 1986 as a marketing director at The Horchow Collection, which is owned by Neiman’s, and in 1992 joined the Dallas Museum of Art as director of marketing and external services.
Reeder joined Neiman Marcus in 1996 as director of media and public relations for the Neiman Marcus Direct division, and in 2003 rose to vice president of media and public relations of Neiman Marcus Direct, before assuming her current post in 2006.
Among the wildest selections she made for the Christmas catalogue were a $10 million Zeppelin, $400,000 his and her boots, and more recently, a mermaid tail. One time she selected his and her caskets which didn’t make the cut. In 2004, “O, The Oprah Magazine” listed Reeder as among five women “we’d like to change places with for a day” because of her job selecting fantasy gifts.
She said that while she loved the assignment, working on the Christmas book each year became increasingly challenging with the rise of the Internet. “Burt once asked me why don’t I pick more salable items, and I said to him, ‘It’s not about the selling. It’s about the publicity.'”