Leonard Riggio is the founder of the Company and has been Chairman of the Board and a principal stockholder since its inception in 1986. He served as Chief Executive Officer from 1986 through February 2002. He was Chairman of the Board, Chief Executive Officer and the principal stockholder of Barnes & Noble College Booksellers, Inc. (B&N College, a subsidiary of the Company until August 2, 2015), one of the nation's largest operators of college bookstores, from 1965 and until its acquisition by the Company in September 2009. Since 1985, Mr. Riggio has been a principal beneficial owner of MBS Textbook Exchange, Inc. ("MBS"), one of the nation's largest wholesalers of college textbooks. He also served as a director of GameStop Corp. ("GameStop"), a national video game retailer from 2001 to 2011.
George Campbell Jr.
George Campbell, Jr . has been a director of the Company since 2008. Dr. Campbell serves as Chair of the Compensation Committee. Dr. Campbell, a physicist, is currently the Chairman of the Webb Institute, an engineering college specializing in naval architecture and marine engineering. Dr. Campbell was the President from July 2000 through June 2011, and is now President Emeritus of The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art, New York, NY ("Cooper Union"), a college focusing primarily on engineering, architecture and art. Dr. Campbell is also a director of Con Edison, Inc. and the Josiah Macy Jr. Foundation. He is also a Trustee of the MITRE Corporation, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Montefiore Medical Center and the Institute of International Education. Dr. Campbell is also a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the New York Academy of Sciences.
Mark D. Carleton
Mark D. Carleton has served as a director of the Company since September 2011. Mr. Carleton serves on the Audit Committee. Mr. Carleton was initially nominated as a director by Liberty Media pursuant to the terms of its preferred stock issued to Liberty Media pursuant to the terms of its investment in the Company in August 2011. After Liberty Media's right to elect to preferred stock directors was terminated upon the sale of the majority of its preferred stock interest in April 2014, the Board chose to re-elect Mr. Carleton as a director. Mr. Carleton has been Senior Vice President of Liberty Media, and served as a Senior Vice President of predecessors of Liberty Media, since 2003. His primary responsibilities include corporate development and oversight of Liberty Media's technology, music, telecom, satellite and sports interests. Prior to Liberty Media, Mr. Carleton served as a Partner with KPMG LLP from 1993 to 2003, where he had overall responsibility for the communications sector and also served as a member of KPMG LLP's Board of Directors. Mr. Carleton currently serves as a director of Live Nation Entertainment, Inc., Mobile Streams, Air Methods Corp., Sirius XM Radio Inc. and a number of private companies and formerly served as a director of DIRECTV.
Scott S. Cowen
Scott S. Cowen has been a director of the Company since April 2014. Dr. Cowen serves as the Chair of the Corporate Governance and Nominating Committee and as a member of the Compensation Committee. Dr. Cowen was the President and Seymour S. Goodman Memorial Professor of Business from 1998 through June 2014, and is now President Emeritus and Distinguished University Professor of Tulane University. From 1984 to 1998, Dr. Cowen served as Dean and Albert J. Weatherhead III Professor of Management, Weatherhead School of Management, Case Western Reserve University ("Case Western"). Prior to his departure in 1998, Dr. Cowen had been associated with Case Western in various capacities since 1976. Dr. Cowen has been a director of Forest City Enterprises, Inc., a real estate developer, since 1989 and Newell Rubbermaid Inc., a consumer products corporation, since 1999. Dr. Cowen is a former member of the Board of Directors of Jo-Ann Stores, Inc., an operator of retail fabric shops, and American Greetings Corp., a manufacturer of greeting cards and related merchandise.
William T. Dillard II
William Dillard, II has been a director of the Company since November 1993. Mr. Dillard serves on the Corporate Governance and Nominating Committee and the Compensation Committee. Mr. Dillard has been the Chief Executive Officer of Dillard's, Inc. ("Dillard's"), a national department store and retailer of luxury goods, since May 1998 and he has been a director of Dillard's since 1968. He was appointed Chairman of Dillard's in May 2002. Mr. Dillard is also a director of Acxiom Corporation ("Acxiom"), a company that provides marketing services focused on the use of technology.
Al Ferrara , Certified Public Accountant, is currently the National Director of Retail & Consumer Products at BDO USA, LLP. Mr. Ferrara has worked at BDO USA, LLP in a variety of positions since 1994 and was a member of its Board of Directors from 2003 to 2010. He will be retiring from BDO USA, LLP on August 31, 2016. Mr. Ferrara has provided services as a partner of public and private retail clients, including: Barnes & Noble, Inc., Aeropostale, Inc., Children's Place, Inc., GameStop Corp., Kmart Corporation, Modells Sporting Goods, Inc., Deb Shops, Inc., A.C. Moore Incorporated, Sleepy's, LLC, Syms Corporation, Camuto Group, Inc., J. McLaughlin (Seas Island Clothiers, LLC) and 1-800-Flowers.com, Inc. Previously, Mr. Ferrara served as the Northeast Regional Managing Partner at BDO USA, LLP from 2000 to 2003. Mr. Ferrara was also a director and BDO USA, LLP representative at Trenwith Capital, Inc. (now BDO Capital Advisors, LLC) from 2000 to 2015 and a member of the retail advisory board at Hilco Retail Consulting from 2013 to 2015.
Paul B. Guenther
Paul B. Guenther has been a director of the Company since June 2015. Mr. Guenther serves as Chair of the Audit Committee. Mr. Guenther is the former President of PaineWebber Group, Inc. and also served on its board of directors. Mr. Guenther also serves as a director of ZAIS Group Holdings, a NASDAQ listed investment management company focusing on investments in specialized credit strategies. He was chairman of Community & Southern Holdings, a community bank with over $4 billion in assets. Mr. Guenther serves as the chairman of the executive committee at Lenox Hill Hospital and serves as a director of Fordham University, where he previously served as the Chairman of Board. Mr. Guenther retired as a director of Guardian Life Insurance in December 2015, a Fortune 250 financial services company and one of the largest individual disability income insurance providers in the U.S. Mr. Guenther has also served as chairman of the New York Philharmonic and is the former director of the Securities Industry Association and a former President and Director of Columbia's Graduate School of Business Alumni Association.
Patricia L. Higgins
Patricia L. Higgins has been a director of the Company since June 2006. Ms. Higgins currently serves as Lead Independent Director and will serve as Lead Independent Director through the Meeting. Ms. Higgins serves on the Audit Committee and the Corporate Governance and Nominating Committee. Ms. Higgins was President, Chief Executive Officer and a director of Switch and Data Facilities Company, Inc., a leading provider of network interconnection and collocation services, from September 2000 to February 2004. Prior to that, she served as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of The Research Board from May 1999 to August 2000 and Vice President and Chief Information Officer of Alcoa Inc. from January 1997 to April 1999. Ms. Higgins is also a director of Travelers, Dycom Industries and lnternap. During the previous five years, Ms. Higgins also served as a director of Delta Air Lines, Visteon and SpectraSite Communications. Ms. Higgins was a director of Barnes & Noble.com from 1999 to 2004.
Demos Parneros was named Barnes & Noble’s Chief Executive Officer in April 2017 after having joined the company as Chief Operating Officer in November 2016. He is also a member of the Company’s Board of Directors.
Mr. Parneros was previously President, North American Stores & Online, for Staples, Inc. He has 30 years of leadership experience in all aspects of retail management, including operations, human resources, merchandising, e-commerce, marketing and real estate.
Mr. Parneros started his career at Staples as General Manager of its first New York City store in 1987. He worked his way up the ranks through multiple management positions, including SVP Mid-Atlantic Operations; President, US Stores; President, US Retail; and President, North American Stores & Online, where he was responsible for a team of 50,000 associates, across 1,800 stores, and Staples’ online business.
Mr. Parneros is a graduate of New York University with a Bachelor of Science in Management and Harvard Business School’s Advanced Management Program. He is currently a member of Keycorp’s Board of Directors and a member of the Board of Advisors of Modell’s Sporting Goods.
Kimberley A. Van Der Zon
Kimberley A. Van Der Zon currently leads the Global Board Practice at Egon Zehnder, the global board advisory, executive search and leadership consulting firm, which she joined in 1999 and where she has been a Partner since 2005. Ms. Van Der Zon serves as a trusted advisor to boards and CEOs on all facets of strategically maximizing human capital, including talent management, CEO and board succession planning, and governance. Previously, Ms. Van Der Zon served as Vice President Corporate Marketing from 1996-1999 at BMO Financial Group. From 1992-1996, Ms. Van Der Zon served as Senior Brand Marketing Manager and Director New Business Development at Labatt Breweries. Ms. Van Der Zon commenced her career in 1986 at Procter & Gamble in Marketing, where she was ultimately promoted to Senior Brand Manager, responsible for the P&L leadership of a portfolio of iconic brands. Ms. Van Der Zon holds a Master of Business Administration degree from the University of Toronto, and an Honors Bachelor of Business Administration degree from Wilfrid Laurier University.
Qualifications, Experience, Attributes and Skills. Ms. Van Der Zon has over 30 years of strategic consulting, brand management and marketing experience. She has wide-ranging executive experience, having served in functional and operational roles across the professional services, consumer, and financial services sectors, and her consulting experience has given her extensive exposure to most other sectors. She has regional expertise in the U.S., U.K., and Canada, with strong knowledge of Europe and Asia as well. She brings to the Board her extensive knowledge of talent management, corporate governance and board leadership, as well as marketing and brand management.