Byline: David Moin

NEW YORK — Pulling from the ranks of a major competitor, Macy’s East said Monday that Kathryn Bufano, a Lord & Taylor senior merchant, will become its executive vice president of sportswear, filling a huge slot that has been open since November.
Beginning Monday, Bufano will command a $600 million chunk of Macy’s women’s business. She will be responsible for moderate, better and designer sportswear, petites and large sizes at the 87 Macy’s stores, including eight Abraham & Straus department stores, which will be converted to Macy’s this spring, and Jordan Marsh. She succeeds Joel Sneider, who left in October.
At Lord & Taylor, Bufano has been succeeded by Jane Elfers, who now carries the title of general merchandise manager of sportswear and petites. Elfers was divisional vice president and merchandise manager of career sportswear, Liz Claiborne and tops.
Bufano’s appointment rounds out the new team of Macy’s East executive vice presidents in merchandising, reporting to Hal Kahn, chairman and chief executive officer. The team consists of Rick Leto; juniors, dresses and lingerie; Edward Brennan, accessories and cosmetics; Robert Homler, hard goods, and Kevin Morrisey, men’s and children’s wear. The appointment is also significant because the company is trying to build its moderate businesses. May Department Stores Co., which operates Lord & Taylor, is said to be stronger in that price tier. Federated Department Stores took over R.H. Macy & Co. last December, triggering an exodus of top executives. However, only one top-level job, which is in sales promotion, is still open at Macy’s East. Bufano started her career at Charles A. Stevens Department Store in Chicago in 1976. A year later, she joined Lord & Taylor, where she has been for the last 18 years, rising from buyer to divisional merchandise manager in moderate and better sportswear. Since 1989, she has been senior vice president and general merchandise manager of sportswear, juniors and special sizes.