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Elie Tahari Names New President of Retail

The designer has tapped Michael Celestino, the former Barneys New York executive, for the post, according to sources.

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CELESTINO TO TAHARI: Elie Tahari has tapped Michael Celestino, the former Barneys New York executive, to be president of retail, according to sources.

Celestino left Barneys in February 2011 after a 20-year career at the luxury chain where he last served as executive vice president of store operations and played a crucial role during the two-year stretch that Barneys operated without a chief executive officer until the arrival of Mark Lee in the fall of 2010.

Celestino was on the front lines in the stores, talking to managers and sales associates daily. Earlier, he was instrumental in the rollout of Barneys New York and Barneys Co-Op stores around the country during Howard Socol’s tenure as Barneys’ ceo, and was a proponent of opening Fred’s restaurants and cautiously adding warehouse sales. At Tahari, he succeeds Lorraine Oddo, the previous president of retail. Tahari has been rebuilding his ranks and earlier this month picked Ingo Wilts as creative director of women’s and men’s design. Wilts was senior vice president and creative director for Kenneth Cole Productions.