General Manager/COO, Golden Door Resort

Kathy Van Ness is the General Manager/COO of the legendary and luxurious Golden Door Resort in Southern California. She brings with her three decades of experience in brand development and management in luxury and fashion to her role.

Kathy began her career at Federated Department Stores rising from buying to merchandising in Miami, Florida. She moved to New York City becoming President of Diane Von Furstenberg, a luxury designer brand for 3 years and was then recruited to join VF Corporation, a Fortune 500 public company, as President of the Jantzen Division and the Mexico Joint Venture. After returning the division to profit, she was recruited to Warnaco, a public company were she held several posts starting with President of Authentic Fitness managing the Speedo business in North America and several designer swim brands such as Ralph Lauren. Kathy went on to become the President/EVP of the WSG Group with revenues over $400.0M, adding brands such as Michael Kors, Nautica, and more. Kathy worked at Warnaco for over 15 years.           

Kathy focused her energies on turnarounds and startups by taking roles in underperforming environments. She moved to Montreal, Canada and joined Trimera, where she launched a retail exclusive active wear store adding $50.0M in top line revenues in over 3 years.               

Kathy is committed to women’s issues and mentoring. She is a member of the World Affairs Council, the Sustainable Business Council and a member of the Advisory Board for 5Gyres, which dedicates itself to the elimination of plastic pollution in the seas. She is an advocate for women in her role as a “Lean In” Champion Circle Mentor with WIN/WPO and a member of the Women International Network. Kathy joined the Young Presidents Organization in her 20’s and continues today as a World President’s Organization member.   

Kathy lives in Manhattan Beach, California and has two daughters. She’s loves to travel and has traveled extensively to Antarctica, Africa, South America, Asia, and Europe.