Stage Stores Inc has appointed Cynthia Murray to replace Vivian McDonald as executive vice president, general merchandise manager.

Murray has been in the retail industry for almost 25 years, most recently as senior vice president, merchandising - stores and catalogue, at apparel company Talbots.

She will oversee the company's sportswear, junior sportswear, special sizes, accessories, cosmetics, dresses, home and gifts, outerwear, and swimwear departments, and will report to chairman, president and chief executive officer Jim Scarborough.

Murray takes up the post on 2 August.