Andrea O’Donnell has been named chief executive of the direct-to-consumer brand on Wednesday. With O’Donnell moving into the CEO spot, Preysman, Everlane’s founder and now former chief executive, will become executive chair while taking on a sustainability-focused role.
Both will begin their new positions Jan. 1, 2022, while O’Donnell will join the business to aid with the transition on Oct. 6.
O’Donnell joins Everlane from Deckers Brands, the parent of labels such as Ugg and Teva, where she was president of the Ugg brand. Among other responsibilities, she oversaw high-profile campaigns and collaborations, such as its recent team-up with Telfar. Before Decker, O’Donnell held various posts at retail brands including Lane Crawford and John Lewis.
Everlane has become one of the most high-profile DTC apparel brands since its founding in 2010, becoming known for publicly disclosing the factories where its clothing is made and how each item is priced, among other transparency efforts. Along the way, it has picked up fans like Gigi Hadid and Meghan Markle, as well as high-profile investors in the form of LVMH-backed private equity company L Catterton, which led an $85 million funding round for Everlane in September 2020.
However, in the past year, the brand has faced controversy. A July 2020 New York Times article described a company struggling with cultural issues and a group of former employees published a document alleging that the brand was falling short of anti-racist objective and faced allegations of union busting from Senator Bernie Sanders.
After public scandal threatened its ethical image, CEO Michael Preysman believes the L Catterton-backed disruptor can still win on radical transparency even as competitors lay claim to the sustainable fashion space.