Borders announces exec changes

ANN ARBOR , Mich. (Jun. 4) Borders Group announced that Mike Edwards has been appointed president of Borders Group and president and CEO of Borders Inc., the principle subsidiary of Borders Group. Bennett LeBow, who recently became chairman of the Borders Group board of directors, will serve as CEO of Borders Group. Edwards will report to LeBow.

Edwards has been interim CEO of Borders since January. He joined the company in September 2009 as EVP and chief merchandising officer. Before joining Borders, he most recently served as president and CEO of Ellington Leather, a Portland, Ore.-based leather handbags and accessories wholesaler. From 2004 through 2007, Edwards was president and CEO for lucy Activewear, a division of VF Corp. He has also held executive management positions in merchandising and operations with Jo-Ann Stores, West Marine Inc., Golfsmith and CompUSA, as well as buying and merchandising posts with Target and the May Department Store Company.

LeBow, who recently made an equity investment of $25 million in Borders through an entity he controls, is chairman of the board of Vector Group, a company he's been affiliated with since 1986. In March of 1996, under his leadership, Liggett Company, owned by Vector Group, became the first tobacco company to settle smoking-related litigation. Before devoting himself completely to private business in 1968, LeBow served in the Pentagon initially as a First Lieutenant and subsequently as a civilian, serving as assistant to the assistant vice chief of staff of the U.S. Army.