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Lillian Vernon

January 1, 2019

Founder and Chief Executive Officer The Lillian Vernon Corporation Mount Vernon, New York Current: CEO The Lillian Vernon Corporation (Deceased) – New Rochelle, New York

Lillian Vernon is America’s most successful and well known female catalog founder. She pioneered her mail order business in 1951 to supplement her husband’s income. With $2,000 and a supply of purses and belts, she placed a $495 ad in Seventeen magazine. The offer included personalization with customer’s initials free of charge. Personalization has been a popular customer service ever since. The Lillian Vernon Corporation was founded in 1965 and completed its first million dollar sales year in 1970. Known for her high tech facilities, a new state of the art Distribution Center will be completed in Virginia Beach, VA in 1989. More than nine million customers receive Lillian Vernon catalogs offering some eight hundred items. An average of 30,000 orders are shipped daily. Lillian Vernon remains the company’s primary merchant and travels around the world on buying trips. She is an active member of two groups of the nation’s most influential business women: the Committee of 200 and The Women’s Forum. She is a supporter of entrepreneurs, cottage industries and Third World artisans and the recipient of many awards. “Know yourself and know your product … be true to both.”