Casual apparel retailer American Eagle Outfitters Inc has appointed LeAnn Nealz to the newly created position of executive vice-president and chief design officer.

Nealz, who boasts design experience with Gap and Calvin Klein, will take up the role in early June.

She will be responsible for men's and women's design and will report to president and vice-chairman Roger Markfield.

Most recently, Nealz led design for children's apparel retailers babyGap and GapKids.