Cheryl Heinonen has been named executive vice president of corporate communications for Macy’s Inc., effective Jan. 9.
Heinonen will be responsible for corporate communications, both internal and external, corporate giving, corporate social responsibility, diversity and associate giving and volunteerism. She will report to Jeff Gennette, who becomes chief executive officer early next year.
In her new role, Heinonen will be based in New York, where she will drive the strategic narrative of the company and integrate all internal communication into one cohesive strategy.
Heinonen is currently senior vice president, corporate relations and chief communications officer at Avon Products Inc., where she is responsible for corporate communications, corporate social responsibility, and sustainability. She has held those duties since joining Avon in 2012. In November 2014, she also assumed the presidency of the Avon Foundation for Women, a charity dedicated to improving the lives of women and their families globally with a focus on breast cancer and domestic violence.
Heinonen will step down from her Avon Products Inc. and Avon Foundation for Women roles effective Jan. 1, but will remain on the Avon Foundation board when she starts her career at Macy’s.
“Cheryl brings valuable expertise to the Macy’s executive team. She is a strategic communicator with an outstanding track record of connecting companies in a powerful way to employees, customers and a broad range of stakeholders,” Gennette said.
Prior to joining Avon, Heinonen was managing director at Burson-Marsteller, the global communications agency, where she advised some of the world’s top consumer brands on communications and reputation management. Earlier, she worked at Visa, most recently as senior vice president of global corporate relations.
Macy’s, with fiscal 2015 sales of $27.1 billion, operates about 880 stores in 45 states, the District of Columbia, Guam and Puerto Rico under the names of Macy’s, Bloomingdale’s, Bloomingdale’s Outlet, Macy’s Backstage and Bluemercury, as well as the macys.com, bloomingdales.com and bluemercury.com web sites.