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Ruffwear Makes Strategic Investments in Top-Level Leadership

The adventure dog gear innovator builds new business leadership team to drive growth in landmark year.




(PRESS RELEASE) BEND, OR – Ruffwear, the originator of performance adventure gear for dogs, is renewing its commitment to business leadership with three top-level talent acquisitions in under six months. Celebrating 30 years as an category pioneer in 2024, the creation of new leadership roles at the C-Suite level in Operations, Marketing, and Sales will help to further solidify the brand’s dedication to strategic growth through operational innovation and brand revitalization.

“30 years ago, Ruffwear defined a category,” said Brandan Hill, president of Ruffwear. “Today’s competitive landscape offers us a chance to explore how we can refine our supply chain, renew our dedication to sustainable and innovative products, and upgrade how we approach marketing and sales. The addition of these top-level executives is critical to our global growth plan and will bring their decades of insight and leadership to business units that are essential to our success moving forward.”

The expansion of leadership began in the fall of 2023 with the advancement of Young Joen to Chief Operating Officer. Joen, a 13-year veteran of the brand, previously served as Ruffwear’s Director of Product Commercialization, revolutionizing their supply chain and sustainability practices through creative problem-solving and efficient operations strategies. In his new role, Joen will continue to maximize operational agility and provide expert management of all logistics processes that seamlessly connect Ruffwear to its partners. As he looks to the future Joen will also begin to explore how AI can better help the design and product iteration process and demand-planning in a global economy.

“Joen’s contributions are fundamental to our operational strategy and enabled brand growth through innovation,” said Hill. “He built an innovative and nimble supply chain that is primed to support our future growth plans as we further invest in brand direction and revenue with the additions of our new Chief Marketing and Chief Revenue roles.”

Chosen for her transformational marketing experience and product management acumen, Robin Skillings joined Ruffwear as chief marketing officer in late 2023. With nearly two decades managing high-performing global teams through leadership roles at companies including KEEN, Honeywell, and Johnson Outdoors, Skillings has a proven track record of creating impactful marketing programs that reinforce brand, product, and target audience through impactful content and leading digital strategy. In her new role, Skillings will focus on building global brand awareness, supporting e-commerce, and curating a best-in-class consumer journey that inspires dog and human connections with the outdoors and wherever adventure finds them.

Rounding out the Ruffwear leadership team is Sandella Gansheimer, appointed chief revenue.


Officer in February of this year. Gansheimer joins Ruffwear with more than 15 years of sales success in pet specialty products and a long history of managing united, data-driven sales teams. Gansheimer’s expertise in distribution and retail will help lead new sales strategies that uplift Ruffwear’s points of differentiation and support expansion within e-commerce, outdoor adventure, pet specialty and independent pet retail channels. Her philosophies on retail engagement and passion for impactful customer connection will help Ruffwear open the aperture of how they inspire new markets to strengthen the canine-human connection through adventure.

“Young, Robin, and Sandella share the same passion for exploration and innovation that drives everyone at Ruffwear,” said Hill. “Their strategic oversight and seasoned leadership will help us forge new paths in the category as we continue to inspire the outdoor connections between dogs and their humans on a global basis.”

Ruffwear celebrates 30 years as an industry innovator in 2024. For three decades the brand has blazed new trails in the creation of purpose-made, functional gear that push the boundaries of canine and human exploration.

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About Ruffwear

Ruffwear’s mission is to build performance dog gear to enhance and inspire exploration for outdoor adventurers and their human companions. Since 1994, Ruffwear Performance Dog Gear™ has combined technology, quality, fit, function, and safety to facilitate its belief that every dog is an explorer. The brand is committed to enhancing the lives of all dogs and their human companions through relationships with The Conservation Alliance, local dog adoption groups, and working dog organizations across the globe.




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