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- BJ's Wholesale CEO Laura Sen Delivers Curry College Commencement Address
BJ's Wholesale CEO Laura Sen Delivers Curry College Commencement Address
May 20, 2012
Laura J. Sen, President and CEO of BJ's Wholesale Club Inc., received an Honorary Degree and served as Commencement speaker at Curry's Commencement ceremony in Milton, Massachusetts on Sunday, May 20, 2012. Curry College awarded Ms. Sen a Doctor of Business Administration degree.
Laura J. Sen is President and Chief Executive Officer of BJ's Wholesale Club, Inc. and serves on its Board of Directors. She has had a 30 year career in retail, and was appointed to her current positions in February 2009. Ms. Sen most recently guided BJ's through a successful acquisition, at the conclusion of which in September 2011 the Company was taken private by Leonard Green Partners and CVC Capital Partners.
Ms. Sen began her career in retail shortly after her graduation from Boston College in 1978 when she joined storied Boston retailer Jordan Marsh as an Executive Trainee. In 1979 she moved to Zayre Corporation, a discount chain based in Natick, Massachusetts. Over the next 10 years she held positions of increasing responsibility at Zayre, including, Buyer and Assistant Vice President, Divisional Merchandise Manager.
In 1989 Zayre Corporation sold its name plate to Ames Department Stores, and shortly thereafter BJ's was spun off as part of Waban, Inc. (In 1997, BJ's became an independent, publicly traded company.) Ms. Sen joined BJ's shortly after the spinout as Assistant Vice President, Manager of Logistics. In 1991 she was promoted to Vice President, Logistics Director; in 1993 she became Senior Vice President, General Merchandise Manager of Non-Food; and in 1997 she assumed the role of Executive Vice President of Merchandising.
In 2003, Ms. Sen left BJ's to work as an independent consultant. She returned to the Company in January 2007 as Executive Vice President of Merchandising and Logistics to join the team seeking to turn around the Company after several years of disappointing results. She was promoted to President and Chief Operating Officer in January 2008, and in February 2009 she became President and Chief Executive Officer and joined the Board.
Ms. Sen is active in the retail industry and her community. In January 2012, she was appointed to the Board of Directors of rue21. As well, she serves on the Boards of the National Retail Federation, The Pine Street Inn (the largest homeless shelter in New England), Dana Farber Cancer Institute and The Boston Ballet. She is involved with the 21st Century Fund, Brookline High School's venture capital for education initiative; ATASK (Asian Task Force Against Domestic Violence); the Massachusetts Competitive Partnership (MACP); and The American Heart Association. She also works with St. Coletta & Cardinal Cushing Schools of Massachusetts in Hanover.