Department store and specialty apparel retailer Gottschalks Inc has appointed Dr Dale Achabal to its board of directors.

Achabal, an associate dean at Santa Clara Univeristy, has worked as a retail strategy consultant with companies including Gap, Levi Strauss and Foot Locker.

Gottschalks CEO Jim Famalette said the company was "very pleased" with Achabal's appointment.

"Dale has many years of experience consulting for major retail corporation and is active in research focused on retailing strategies," Famalette said.

"We believe Gottschalks will benefit from Dale's extensive knowledge of our industry and we look forward to his contributions to the company."

Gottschalks operates 63 department stores and 10 specialty apparel stores across the United States.