Susan McGalla has been a trailblazer for women in the business world and has become a success story and inspiration for young women with aspirations of climbing the company ladder. She has demonstrated versatility in her business career as she’s comfortable working with both men and women. She has held a variety of executive posts in the corporate world and has made her mark with each one.
The rough and tumble childhood that McGalla enjoyed as she grew up with two rowdy brothers and her football coach father has provided a unique preparation for her later career in business. She wasn’t singled out because she was a female, rather she was forced to compete on her own merits and has embarked on her career with the same mindset. Hard work was commended in her family and it has been the accelerant for her career to this day.
One noteworthy chapter in McGalla’s career that is illustrative of her accomplishments and drive for success is her stint with American Eagle Outfitters. She helped break the glass ceiling during her time there when she became the first female executive at the company. She not only became the first female executive with the company she also rose up through the ranks to become their President.
Susan McGalla has been a strong voice for women getting opportunities to advance their careers based on their own merits. One avenue that she endorses that is rarely used is mentoring and executive sponsorships for aspiring career-minded women. Women’s initiatives and conferences abound, however, McGalla believes a more practical way forward is for young women to work with male executives on important assignments and forge mentoring relationships.
Mount Union College was where Susan McGalla attended college and she received a Bachelor’s Degree in Business and Marketing which became the foundation for her success. She also serves on their College Board of Advisors and is married as well to Stephen McGalla.
As McGalla served as the President of American Eagle Outfitters she played a crucial role in the launch of their Aerie brand which has been a wonderful success for the company. She currently works for the Pittsburgh Steelers where she is a Vice-President of Business Strategy and Creative Development.