The Stride Rite Corporation elected Edward L. Larsen to the Board of Directors to fill the vacancy created by the resignation of Bruce Van Saun on April 6, 2006. Mr. Larsen currently serves as the senior vice president, finance, CFO and treasurer of Talbots, where he has served in that capacity since 1991. Previously, Mr. Larsen served as VP and CFO of Lillian Vernon Corporation. He also held various positions with General Mills, Inc., including the position of VP and group controller of the Specialty Retailing Group.
Mr. Larsen will serve as a Class III director until the 2008 annual meeting of shareholders and until his successor is duly elected and qualified. Mr. Larsen will also serve as a member of the company's Audit Committee. The Board of Directors determined that Mr. Larsen is “independent” as that term is defined in the rules of the Securities and Exchange Commission and the applicable listing standards of the New York Stock Exchange. In addition, the Board of Directors has determined that Mr. Larsen qualifies as an “audit committee financial expert” within the meaning of the rules of the Securities and Exchange Commission and that he has accounting and related financial management expertise within the meaning of the listing standards of the New York Stock Exchange.
There are no arrangements or understandings between Mr. Larsen and any other persons pursuant to which Mr. Larsen was selected as a director. Prior to his election, Mr. Larsen has not had any involvement, or been a party in any transaction, with the Company.