How Susan McGalla Has Set the Pace for Women Leardeship

Susan McGalla is an executive consultant and a businesswoman. She is the former president of American Eagle Outfitters. Susan is a believer in gender equality, and she has helped many women rise into senior positions in organizations. She has held women motivational talks at the Carnegie Mellon University Speaker Series of CEOs and Women and Girl’s Foundation of Pittsburgh.

Susan’s career began in 1986 when she joined Joseph Horne Company. She served in several administrative and marketing positions in the company until 1994 when she left for American Eagle Outfitters. McGalla joined American Eagle Outfitters at a time when all executives were men. However, this did not stop her from working her way up in the company’s ranks. She started as a divisional merchandise buyer before holding several managerial positions and eventually serving as the President of the Company.

In 2009, Susan left American Eagle and ventured into private consultancy for financial investment and retail industries. She became the CEO of Wet Seal in the same year and served for two years before leaving to establish P3 Executive Consulting where she offers consultancy in marketing, operational efficiencies, branding and talent management. Currently, she is the VP of Business Strategy and Creative Development at Pittsburgh Steelers. This is another industry dominated by men, but she has not been intimidated into succeeding.

There are several Women networks and initiatives allow women to share ideas and provide women leaders with support. These groups also offer women with platforms for strategizing making plans for their businesses. They have also played a great role in providing platforms for women to connect and empower each other.

Susan is a role model to many women who desire to succeed in business. She has held several senior positions and succeeded. McGalla has previously been a director of the Allegheny Conference on Community Development and a trustee of the University of Pittsburgh. Susan serves in the BOD of HFF Incorporation, a company that offers commercial real estate services and also in the Magee Womens’ Hospital Research Institute and Foundation. She holds a degree in Business and Marketing from Mount Union College.


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