Geren Lockhart on How To Move Seamlessly Through Industries
February 25, 2024
Geren Lockhart focuses on building brands that encourage positive change through everyday choices.

Most recently, she has worked on incubating CANAVA, a platform for the conscious consumer that combines content and product to help create a world where we can live well, be well, and do good simultaneously. Alongside that she works as a senior executive and creative consultant for established brands such as J.Crew, West Elm, Bonobos, Kjaer Weis, 20th Century Fox, and others.


You have worn numerous (!) hats. What do you think is the reason you are able to move through so many industries seamlessly?

As a curious person, I found myself in the right rooms early on in my career. A woman named Christine took a chance on me when I was just starting college, and from that moment on, I saw every day as an opportunity to learn. I treated every opportunity as a chance to think like an entrepreneur, even if it wasn't my responsibility - which meant a lot more work than was expected. As I gained experience and skills, I became an active contributor to the conversation and then a part of that legacy. This way of thinking has allowed me to continue expanding and exploring new avenues.

From where you sit, what are innovations in consumer brands that excite you? I.e., what's cool and upcoming that we haven't seen yet?

Innovation in materials and a growing consumer focus on transparency is exciting because it means we can continue to be delighted while we also work to be more regenerative with our purchases.

What's your most useful leadership secret i.e. the one that's helped you really get ahead?

It is not necessary to do every job yourself, but it is important to understand the pressure points and challenges that come with each job. Delegating tasks and empowering your team, including those from other departments, is crucial for success. However, I believe that great leaders should also have a real understanding of what they are asking their team to achieve. This is especially important when working in the innovation space.

How important has the community been in your ability to scale your career?

The most significant impact on my accomplishments has come from community. When I say community, I'm referring to everyone involved in a brand or project, from the supply chain to the end consumer. When I launched my first brand, Geren Ford, it was a very grassroots effort, and I was amazed by the support I received. I think that was the "magic in the stitching" of the pants that started it all.

What's one thing you cannot live without?

My 4 year old rescue pup Fynn. 

Who is one woman you admire?

My 91-year-old Grandma, Valeria Murry, has been a great influence in my life. Over the past few years, I have examined every aspect of my life as if it were a lab project to determine how I can better prepare for the future. We have been on a wild ride and this exploration has given me a lot of hope for our collective future. By challenging myself to re-learn how to thrive I realized how capable I am, and saw that a great deal of those capabilities lead back to the slow, late-summer childhood stints spent learning from my grandma.

What's one trend you are excited about in 2024?

I am excited to see the world celebrate the design talent that has been overlooked for decades, despite their hard work and dedication. Willy Chavarria is an example of such a talent. It is inspiring to witness the success of someone who possesses a unique perspective and is highly qualified. The overwhelming global response to Tracy Chapman's recent appearance is another great example of celebrating genius that follows its own path.


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