Celebrating Women’s History Month: Honoring women in retail

Mar 7, 2024
Written by WR Communications

March marks the celebration of Women’s History Month—a poignant reminder to honor the profound contributions and achievements of women, both past and present. What began as a week-long recognition in the United States has since evolved into a month-long observance, formally established in 1987, to underscore the indispensable role women play in shaping our societies and industries.

Within the realm of retail, the influence of women is undeniable, having left an enduring imprint on the industry characterized by innovation, inclusivity, and progress. From the pioneering spirit of entrepreneurs to the strategic vision of corporate leaders, women have exerted significant influence across every spectrum of retail, spanning from local enterprises to global conglomerates.

This month, let us pay tribute to the extraordinary accomplishments of women in retail. We commemorate the groundbreaking initiatives of trailblazers such as Mary Kay Ash, whose transformative impact on the cosmetics industry continues to resonate, and Helena Rubinstein, whose bold leadership redefined the standards of beauty retailing. These remarkable women, among countless others, have not only reshaped consumer experiences but have also revolutionized business practices, leaving a legacy for future generations to build upon.

It is imperative that we also shine a spotlight on the multitude of women propelling the retail sector forward today. From the tenacity of small business owners to the ingenuity of frontline workers and the strategic acumen of executives, their unwavering dedication, creativity, and resilience collectively form the bedrock of the vibrant retail ecosystem.

In a demonstration of this commitment to advancing women in leadership, on Wednesday, March 6, 2024, Renée Sunde, CEO of the Washington Retail Association (WR), participated in a fireside chat launching the JC Penny WINGS (women’s empowerment team) 2024 Women’s History Month Programing. Sunde was joined by Rachel Michelin, CEO of California Retailers Association where they highlighted their personal journey’s working in retail. Both speakers shared advice for women who are either starting or growing their careers in retail and how their organizations have advocated at the state legislative level in support of the retail industry.

As we collectively celebrate Women’s History Month, let us not only pay homage to the achievements of women in the annals of retail history but also reaffirm our commitment to championing gender equality and inclusivity within the industry.



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