Kaplan named senior VP of stores at Levitz
By Clint Engel -- Furniture Today, November 11, 2001
Woodbury, N.Y. — Stuart Kaplan has been named senior vice president, stores of Levitz Furniture stores on the East and West coasts.
In the new position, Kaplan is responsible for all store-level activities in sales, sales training and recruiting.
The 48-store Levitz of Pleasanton, Calif., is part of Levitz Home Furnishings, which is also parent to the 58-store Seaman's of Woodbury, N.Y. He will be based for now at the Levitz Home Furnishings corporate office in Woodbury.
Kaplan, who has been in the industry for more than 30 years, most recently was senior vice president at Rooms To Go, where he led the Seffner, Fla.-based retailer's store expansion program outside Florida from 1995 until earlier this year.
He was recruited there with his wife, Gail Taylor, from Selling Retail International, a sales and management consulting company where they were partners with John Lawhon. (Taylor remains vice president of sales at Rooms To Go).
Earlier, Kaplan held various management posts, mostly in start-up and turnaround situations. He got his start in the industry at Levitz in Dallas in 1968, when the company had fewer than five stores and was preparing to go public.
He stayed with Levitz until 1974, eventually becoming regional vice president over California and then the Northeast.
"I'm looking forward to working with seasoned retail veterans Alan Rosenberg and Steven Halper and the LHFI management team," Kaplan said.
Rosenberg is president and chief executive officer of Levitz Home Furnishings and Halper is chief operating officer.
"We're happy to have him and believe he will bring a certain professionalism and be able to help us develop a store profile (for Levitz) that will advance where we are today," Rosenberg said. "His history with Levitz and many other companies is invaluable and will give us a corporate overview."