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The RETHINK Retail Top 100 Retail Influencers is an annual list featuring the world’s most instrumental influencers in retail.

This list is comprised of retail experts, consultants, analysts, academics, journalists, and thought leaders who are making an impact in retail in 2021.

Awardees are selected by RETHINK Retail’s staff and listed in no particular order of rank.

Academia

Assistant Professor of Marketing at George Mason University

Gautham Vadakkepatt

Assistant Professor of Marketing at George Mason University
Managing Director, Baker Retailing Center at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania

Mina Fader

Managing Director, Baker Retailing Center at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania
Program Director at Harvard Business School

Sandrine Crener

Program Director at Harvard Business School
Clinical Professor of Marketing, NYU Stern & Founder, Section4

Scott Galloway

Clinical Professor of Marketing, NYU Stern & Founder, Section4

Analysts

Chief Executive Officer/Chief Research Officer at Telsey Advisory Group

Dana Telsey

Chief Executive Officer/Chief Research Officer at Telsey Advisory Group
Founder and CEO of Coresight Research

Deborah Weinswig

Founder and CEO of Coresight Research
Senior Analyst, Commerce Technology at Forrester

Emily Pfeiffer

Senior Analyst, Commerce Technology at Forrester
President at IHL Services and Donor Trustee of Retail Orphan Initiative

Greg Buzek

President at IHL Services and Donor Trustee of Retail Orphan Initiative
GVP at IDC Retail Insights

Leslie Hand

GVP at IDC Retail Insights
Managing Director Luxury and Fashion at Coresight Research

Marie Driscoll

Managing Director Luxury and Fashion at Coresight Research
Group Research Director at GlobalData Retail

Maureen Hinton

Group Research Director at GlobalData Retail
Senior Head of Global Digital Consumer Research at Euromonitor, Forbes Contributor, International Keynote Speaker

Michelle Evans

Senior Head of Global Digital Consumer Research at Euromonitor, Forbes Contributor, International Keynote Speaker
Managing Director and Retail Analyst at GlobalData Retail

Neil Saunders

Managing Director and Retail Analyst at GlobalData Retail
VP Principal Analyst, Digital Transformation and Business Strategy at Forrester

Nigel Fenwick

VP Principal Analyst, Digital Transformation and Business Strategy at Forrester
Managing Partner at Retail Systems Research

Paula Rosenblum

Managing Partner at Retail Systems Research
VP and Principal Analyst, Retail at Forrester

Sucharita Kodali

VP and Principal Analyst, Retail at Forrester

Associations

President & CEO of Retail Council of Canada

Diane J. Brisebois

President & CEO of Retail Council of Canada
EVP, Industry Engagement at Consumer Brands Association

Ellen Davis

EVP, Industry Engagement at Consumer Brands Association
Chief Executive of the British Retail Consortium

Helen Dickinson

Chief Executive of the British Retail Consortium
Director of Insight at British Retail Consortium

Kyle Monk

Director of Insight at British Retail Consortium
President and CEO at National Retail Federation

Matthew Shay

President and CEO at National Retail Federation

Experts

Founder and CEO of Retail Reflections

Andrew Busby

Founder and CEO of Retail Reflections
Co-founder at ThinkUncommon.com, Clubhouse Retail Host, Author of “Retail Innovation Reframed”

Andrew Smith

Co-founder at ThinkUncommon.com, Clubhouse Retail Host, Author of “Retail Innovation Reframed”
China Marketing Expert, Founder of Alarice & ChoZan, LinkedIn Top Voice, Global Speaker, 3x Bestselling Author

Emily Pfeiffer

China Marketing Expert, Founder of Alarice & ChoZan, LinkedIn Top Voice, Global Speaker, 3x Bestselling Author
CEO of The Retail Doctor

Bob Phibbs

CEO of The Retail Doctor
Strategy & Operations Innovations Leader, Retail & Consumer Transformation Change Agent

Brandon Rael

Strategy & Operations Innovations Leader, Retail & Consumer Transformation Change Agent
Chief Retail Strategist & Executive Advisor at Studio Rx

Carl Boutet

Chief Retail Strategist & Executive Advisor at Studio Rx
Retail Advisor, Speaker & Strategist to Brands, Agencies, & Solution Providers

Carol Spieckerman

Retail Advisor, Speaker & Strategist to Brands, Agencies, & Solution Providers
Head of Trends at Insider Trends

Cate Trotter

Head of Trends at Insider Trends
Principal of Cathy Hotka & Associates, Retail Insider

Cathy Hotka

Principal of Cathy Hotka & Associates, Retail Insider
Chief Operating Officer at DLC Management Corporation, Host of the Retail Retold Podcast

Chris Ressa

Chief Operating Officer at DLC Management Corporation, Host of the Retail Retold Podcast
Retail Consultant, Inventory Strategy, Management One Retail Expert

Christine Russo

Retail Consultant, Inventory Strategy, Management One Retail Expert
Technology Futurist, Disruptive Innovation Expert, Keynote Speaker, Best Selling Author

Daniel Burrus

Technology Futurist, Disruptive Innovation Expert, Keynote Speaker, Best Selling Author
Retail/consumer/technology Non Executive Director & Advisor, Author of “The Average is Always Wrong”

Ian Shepherd

Retail/consumer/technology Non Executive Director & Advisor, Author of “The Average is Always Wrong”
Chief Commerce Strategy Officer of Publicis, Podcaster at The Jason & Scot Show, Chief Strategist at Retailgeek

Jason Goldberg

Chief Commerce Strategy Officer of Publicis, Podcaster at The Jason & Scot Show, Chief Strategist at Retailgeek
Chief Executive Officer – Americas of UNOde50, Board Member and Advisor

Jason McNary

Chief Executive Officer – Americas of UNOde50, Board Member and Advisor
Retail Influencer, Chairman of the Retail Advisory Board at Apptricity Corporation

Jeff Roster

Retail Influencer, Chairman of the Retail Advisory Board at Apptricity Corporation
Author, Keynote Speaker, Podcast Host, Moderator, Business Coach, Consultant, VP of Sales & Marketing at RSPA

Jim Roddy

Author, Keynote Speaker, Podcast Host, Moderator, Business Coach, Consultant, VP of Sales & Marketing at RSPA
Principal – Chief Retail Innovation Officer at Deloitte, Member of the Board of Directors at Shop.org (NRF)

Kasey Lobaugh

Principal – Chief Retail Innovation Officer at Deloitte, Member of the Board of Directors at Shop.org (NRF)
President of Graff Retail Inc.

Kevin Graff

President of Graff Retail Inc.
Vice President, Strategy & Experience at Valtech

Line Tousignant

Vice President, Strategy & Experience at Valtech
CEO Founder at The Lionesque Group RetailWithMelissa Regular Contributor at ABC News Radio LinkedIn Top Voices

Melissa Gonzalez

CEO & Founder at The Lionesque Group, #RetailWithMelissa Regular Contributor at ABC News Radio, LinkedIn Top Voices
Founder, Strategic Advisor, Keynote Speaker, Podcaster

Michael LeBlanc

Founder, Strategic Advisor, Keynote Speaker, Podcaster
Author, Keynote Speaker, Podcast Host, ModeratoAuthor, ‘Retail Technology Magazine’ Publisher, Research Director and Consultant

Miya Knights

Author, Keynote Speaker, Podcast Host, ModeratoAuthor, ‘Retail Technology Magazine’ Publisher, Research Director and Consultant
Customer Service/CX Consultant, Keynote Speaker, Forbes Senior Contributor

Micah Solomon

Customer Service/CX Consultant, Keynote Speaker, Forbes Senior Contributor
Retail Analyst, Author and Founder at NBK Retail

Natalie Berg

Retail Analyst, Author and Founder at NBK Retail
Founder Retail Minded, Co-Founder Independent Retailer Conference & ACTION IN RETAIL, Author, Speaker

Nicole Leinbach Reyhle

Founder Retail Minded, Co-Founder Independent Retailer Conference & ACTION IN RETAIL, Author, Speaker
Independent Retail Transformation Consultant, Podcast Host of the Retail Transformation Show

Oliver Banks

Independent Retail Transformation Consultant, Podcast Host of the Retail Transformation Show
Management Consultant, Professor, Angel Investor, Columnist, Book Author

Peter Cohan

Management Consultant, Professor, Angel Investor, Columnist, Book Author
Marketing Strategist, Retail Transformation Advisor and Thought Leader

Ricardo Belmar

Marketing Strategist, Retail Transformation Advisor and Thought Leader
Consumer Anthropologists, Speakers, Authors, Consultants

Rich Kizer and Georganne Bender

Consumer Anthropologists, Speakers, Authors, Consultants
Partner at Triangle Capital LLC, Forbes Contributor

Richard Kestenbaum

Partner at Triangle Capital LLC, Forbes Contributor
Best Selling Author of “RETAIL PRIDE”, Vice President of Stores at INTERMIX and Board of Directors at Goodwill

Ron Thurston

Best Selling Author of “RETAIL PRIDE”, Vice President of Stores at INTERMIX and Board of Directors at Goodwill
Founder and moderator of RETAIL SPEAK, Forbes Contributor

Sanford Stein

Founder and moderator of RETAIL SPEAK, Forbes Contributor
President of Profitero, Campbell Soup Board Member, Co-Host of BRAVE COMMERCE Podcast

Sarah Hofstetter

President of Profitero, Campbell Soup Board Member, Co-Host of BRAVE COMMERCE Podcast
EVP, North America at Valtech

Shannon Ryan

EVP, North America at Valtech
Customer Service & Experience Expert, Keynote Speaker, NYT Bestselling Author

Shep Hyken

Customer Service & Experience Expert, Keynote Speaker, NYT Bestselling Author
Founder of SW Retail Advisors, CNBC Contributor, Co-Founder of The DealmakeHers, Board Member

Stacey Widlitz

Founder of SW Retail Advisors, CNBC Contributor, Co-Founder of The DealmakeHers, Board Member
Keynote Speaker, Retail Analyst, Strategic Advisor, Forbes Senior Contributor, Author of “Remarkable Retail”, Podcast Host

Steve Dennis

Keynote Speaker, Retail Analyst, Strategic Advisor, Forbes Senior Contributor, Author of “Remarkable Retail”, Podcast Host
Retail Advisor and Consultant

Steve Dresser

Retail Advisor and Consultant
Top 100 Retail Influencer, Board Advisor, Consulting, Speaker, CCO/CEO

Tony D’Onofrio

Top 100 Retail Influencer, Board Advisor, Consulting, Speaker, CCO/CEO
CEO at Perch, Entrepreneur, Executive, Advisor

Trevor Sumner

CEO at Perch, Entrepreneur, Executive, Advisor
Co-Founder at CommerceNext, Partner at Chameleon Collective, Advisor

Veronika Sonsev

Co-Founder at CommerceNext, Partner at Chameleon Collective, Advisor

Media

Director, Content + New Media at Retail TouchPoints

Alicia Esposito

Director, Content + New Media at Retail TouchPoints
Forbes Senior Contributor

Andria Cheng

Forbes Senior Contributor
National Retail Writer at The Associated Press

Anne D’Innocenzio

National Retail Writer at The Associated Press
Retail and M&A Editor at The Times

Ashley Armstrong

Retail and M&A Editor at The Times
Senior Features Editor, CO— by U.S. Chamber of Commerce

Barbara Thau

Senior Features Editor, CO— by U.S. Chamber of Commerce
Editor-in-Chief at Modern Retail

Cale Weissman

Editor-in-Chief at Modern Retail
CEO of Omni Talk & Third Haus, Senior Forbes Contributor, Blogger

Chris Walton

CEO of Omni Talk & Third Haus, Senior Forbes Contributor, Blogger
Senior Retail Reporter at CNBC

Courtney Reagan

Senior Retail Reporter at CNBC
Editor-in-Chief at RetailWire

George Anderson

Editor-in-Chief at RetailWire
Entrepreneur and Writer

Ian Middleton

Entrepreneur and Writer
Founder and CEO of The Business of Fashion

Imran Amed

Founder and CEO of The Business of Fashion
Senior Correspondent at Recode

Jason Del Rey

Senior Correspondent at Recode
President & Co-Founder of Women in Retail Leadership Circle & Total Retail

Jennifer DiPasquale

President & Co-Founder of Women in Retail Leadership Circle & Total Retail
Director at Newstores, European Ed at VMSD, Contributor at Retail Week

John Ryan

Director at Newstores, European Ed at VMSD, Contributor at Retail Week
Retail Reporter at Bloomberg News

Jordyn Holman

Retail Reporter at Bloomberg News
Editor-in-Chief at RETHINK Retail

Julia Raymond Hare

Editor-in-Chief at RETHINK Retail
Reporter at The Wall Street Journal

Khadeeja Safdar

Reporter at The Wall Street Journal
Head of Resilient Retail at Shopify

Kristen LaFrance

Head of Resilient Retail at Shopify
SVP Content at Shoptalk and Groceryshop

Krystina Gustafson

SVP Content at Shoptalk and Groceryshop
Industry insider, Forbes Contributor, Editor, Content Specialist

Laura Heller

Industry insider, Forbes Contributor, Editor, Content Specialist
Retail Reporter at CNBC

Lauren Thomas

Retail Reporter at CNBC
Senior Writer at Fortune Magazine

Phil Wahba

Senior Writer at Fortune Magazine
Founder/Publisher/Editor Global Retail Brands

Phillip Russo

Founder/Publisher/Editor Global Retail Brands
CEO of The Robin Report

Robin Lewis

CEO of The Robin Report
Retail Business Reporter at The New York Times

Sapna Maheshwari

Retail Business Reporter at The New York Times
Retail Correspondent at The Guardian and The Observer

Sarah Butler

Retail Correspondent at The Guardian and The Observer
Retail Columnist at Bloomberg

Sarah Halzack

Retail Columnist at Bloomberg
Retail Reporter at The Wall Street Journal

Sarah Nassauer

Retail Reporter at The Wall Street Journal
Chief Strategy Officer at The Robin Report, Professor, Forbes Contributor in Retail

Shelley E. Kohan

Chief Strategy Officer at The Robin Report, Professor, Forbes Contributor in Retail
Editor, STORES Media/National Retail Federation

Susan Reda

Editor, STORES Media/National Retail Federation
Retail Industry Reporter at The Wall Street Journal

Suzanne Kapner

Retail Industry Reporter at The Wall Street Journal

About Our List

How do we define retail influencers and categories?
We recognize influencers for their activity within the online retail community. Influencers frequently comment on retail trends or news stories, share industry insights and join thought leadership discussions. These influencers take on many roles. We selected executives from academia, media, consultancies and analyst firms.

Often times, influencers wear multiple hats spanning professions. We identified 5 categories most common in this cohort:

Academia: university educators leading retail-related courses or programs

Analysts: industry research firms tracking the latest trends

Associations: retail trade associations

Experts: retail authors, consultants, advisors, futurists, speakers

Media: editors, journalists, podcast hosts, bloggers, content creators

How did we identify the Top 100?
Our team used a variety of sources to select our Top 100, including: third-party listings, primary research within our own network of influencers, recent award winners and tools such as Buzzsumo.

We considered factors such as social presence, articles, speaking engagements, awards and authority to verify each awardee included in our non-ordered listing of the Top 100 Retail Influencers 2021.

How can you be considered for future lists?
Yes. If you’re actively sharing insights, publishing your writing, speaking at industry events and engagement with the media, we would love to consider you for 2022.

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