KNOWMore Keynote Series: Uncovering Retail's New Equity w/ Shawna Olsten

In a day where e-commerce is referred to as the Armageddon of brick and mortar retail, the shop experience has become an essential part of building lasting customer relationships. Traditional retail spaces are no longer being treated as just a place to sell a product. The brick-and-mortar experience is transforming into a cultural hot spot for building authentic connections and community.

Shawna has an extensive brand leadership background in the apparel industry. She cut her teeth working with action sports at Quiksilver Inc., where she led the marketing team for Quiksilver, Roxy and DC Shoes as the Canadian Marketing Director and oversaw programs that secured $120 million+ in sales in her region. 

After nine years with Quiksilver, Shawna was hired by Native Shoes to help with their international launch as Global Marketing Director. Within two years, the brand grew its distribution to 45 countries. In 2014, Shawna was promoted to VP of Global Brand where she led the execution of the “Future Classics” and “Keep it Lite” brand visions. During her five-year tenure she introduced notable collaborations with Marc Jacobs, Comme des Garçons and Pleats Please Issey Miyake. She also headed the introduction of a new product category led by the Apollo Moc, and as a result Native Shoes was named one of the top footwear brands to watch in 2015 by Hypebeast.

Most recently Shawna joined Kit and Ace as the International Market Director for North America and was promoted to VP of Brand in September 2016. At Kit and Ace, she managed the Global Brand Team, where she oversaw brand strategy and lead product and community storytelling.