Hot Topic, a mall-based specialty retailer of music-licensed and music-influenced apparel, accessories and gift items for teens, announced today that Tom Rail has joined the company as senior vice president and general manager, Torrid, a newly created position.

He will be responsible for the operation of the company's new plus-size concept, Torrid and will report to Betsy McLaughlin, the company's president and chief executive officer.

Rail has over 22 years of experience in retail, including the roll-out of start-up retail operations. Most recently Rail was president of retail for Aris Industries where he was responsible for the XOXO boutique stores and outlet stores, the XOXO Internet site, and the coordination of retail licensees.

From August 1995 to December 1998, Rail was president of retail for designer holdings where he was responsible for developing 37 Calvin Klein Outlet stores and, upon its acquisition by Warnaco in the autumn of 1997, assumed the additional responsibilities for approximately 85 Olga Warner stores.