Saucony President Anne Cavassa

By Alysia Montano, Molly Huddle, Roisin McGettigan

We talk to Saucony President Anne Cavassa about her start in the sportswear and shoe industry, her journey through the business ranks, how sports, motherhood and being a woman informed her leadership style and the issues she faced along the way. She also talks about her goals and what she feels are her duties as a leader and a woman in this space. (see show notes at for complete recap)0-23 mins Catch up:Recap of ep 22: 40% of USA being BIPOC, or 27% of USA consider selves BIPOC?Virtual race shoutouts! Good job Nikki Hiltz for Trevor ProjectAnd Boss crew for Sachs Foundation (and state mile record!)Say Their Names 5k and mile here , proceeds to Embrace Race Foundation and Nation Foundation for Human and Civil Rights FoundationDonate to BraveLikeGabe in Gabe’s Memory to support rare cancer research “Flowers come out of dirt and I will. They don’t want us to win but we going to win anyway”-Alysia19-(link to earnest young- women at high level leadership roles playing sport stat)Annes start: Psychology to design school to apparel design, to manager, director, leading design and out of frustration to merchandising to have more control of the business, and onward and upward.28:30-Being a woman in a leadership position:Gender split in the industry is somewhat even UNTIL VP levelMuch of career it was dealing with internal battles: personal confidence, taking risks, putting self out thereAt director level-started to feel held back by being a woman31;30 Ex:Conversation w boss “didn’t think I could lead a sport brand because I’m a woman and don’t know what competition means”34:30- Anne is scrappy and likes competitive energy, being told she can’t was used as motivation/tried to keep it productive36-Motherhood- had trouble becoming a mother at first, walked away from job at Nike to try to focus on health“Motherhood has added a layer of complexity that has made it really really challenging” but has some extra flexibility due to becoming a mother later , having more of an established career and schedule39:00- prioritized running in mid 30’sHow Covid has made it harder to be a working Mom“ I try from a leadership perspective ....realizing that I can lead the way that I think people want and need and that is to be more empathetic of everyone's entire life and what they have going on and give space for that and grace for things that arent perfect and just recognize that. That’s the environment myself and our leadership team are trying to create at Saucony ; one that embraces the whole person and allows you to live your life-there has to be room for that”44-“If I can be a leader who can create space and design our programs to support you guys in your whole life and becoming moms and help use through that to the other side, I mean that's my responsibility...thats what i can do as a leader to make change in our industry”47-”There was a point in time in my leadership journey where I just felt more comfortable being myself, and I realized that I can’t really compete with the male leadership around me trying to be a dude and a guy and my strengths-some of them

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