Andy Polk is Senior Vice President at the Footwear Distributors and Retailers of America (FDRA). FDRA is the footwear industry’s trade association and ‘thought hub’ representing over 150 footwear companies from athletic to fashion including NIKE, Steve Madden, Foot Locker and Zappos. As SVP, Polk oversees the association’s marketing, communications, reports, events, as well as helps develop its advocacy strategies. Polk has a particular interest in industry innovation such as 3D footwear design and printing, and other technologies that are changing how shoes are made and sold. If you see him at a footwear event he’s usually cornered some poor footwear executive, asking them a million questions from current trends to how they see consumer tastes and attitudes changing to how they are retooling old business models to find new and interesting efficiencies.
Prior to FDRA, Polk served as a senior policy advisor and communications director to U.S. Representative Sue Myrick, and various House caucuses, from 2002 – 2011. In that role, he contributed to no major international incidents. However, he did have red kool-aid with the President of Bosnia, coffee with the former Crown Prince of Iran, and doughnuts with Alan Greenspan and Mike Mullen the former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff at various meetings. His one failure was that Garry Kasparov refused to play him in chess when asked; it is unclear if it was out of pity or fear. In 2012, Polk earned his master’s degree at the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE). Polk lives in Washington, DC with his beautiful wife Kelly.