Strategic Merchandising Leader and Transformational Change Agent

Heather Koerner is an Associate Partner with Columbus Consulting. She is a retail industry veteran with 20+ years of experience, across multiple omni channel specialty and department store retailers.  Heather has deep experience in merchandising and planning, as well as leadership experience in design, technical design, and sourcing. She has consistently delivered results by building highly collaborative and accountable teams; focused on strategic goal setting and execution. Category experience includes apparel, accessories, footwear, home.


  • Columbus Consulting – Business Process Lead
    • Developed future state business process for Assortment Planning, Merch Financial Planning, and Location Planning; as well as integrated future state planning and merch processes with current production milestones on an integrated calendar
  • Columbus Consulting – Merchandising Business Lead
    • Partnered with client team to construct a business case for an ERP, OMS, and eCommerce re-platform.  Assisted with RFP process
  • Soft Surroundings – Chief Merchandising Officer
    • Led team of 50+ across Merchandising, MP&A, Design, Sourcing, and Tech Design.  Transformed go-to-market process and calendar, increasing speed to market. Introduced data-driven decision making into assortment planning; resulting in SKU count reduction and improved turn.  Evolved product development strategy from market reliance to strategic in-house design and sourcing, resulting in significant IMU improvement
  • Victoria’s Secret Lingerie– Senior Vice President/GMM – Sport and Sleepwear
    • Launched lifestyle segment of sport apparel business across stores and digital.  Re-strategized sleepwear business based on customer insights
  • White House Black Market – Senior Vice President/GMM – Total Brand
    • Achieved strategic growth by expanding assortment across breadth of lifestyle, as well as executing fit improvements to serve broader customer base.  Steering Committee member for Assortment Planning system selection, design, and implementation (Chicos FAS Transform 2012)
  • Ann Taylor LOFT – Director, Business Process Design


  • Buying/Merchandising
  • Assortment Planning
  • Merchandise Planning
  • Product Development
  • Product Lifecycle Management


  • Executive Leadership
  • Process Re-engineering
  • Organizational Design
  • Business Requirements
  • System Selection
  • Retail Consultant


  • Michael Kors
  • Victoria’s Secret
  • White House Black Market
  • Soft Surroundings
  • Ann Taylor LOFT
  • Rue Gilt Group

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