We shine the light on 25 retail rock stars each year through The List of People Shaping Retail's Future, and recognize dozens of students who will be retail's leaders tomorrow..

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Doug McMillon
President and CEO

The List of People Shaping Retail’s Future

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The List recognizes true originals, rising stars, inspirational change-makers, champions of retail and fearless leaders whose imagination, inspiration and innovation are having a true impact on the industry.

The Visionary

For The Visionary, innovation isn’t a buzzword or a new concept – it’s part of their DNA. They set the standard for tomorrow’s retail leaders.


The Disruptors

True originals who rock the boat with ideas so crazy, they just might work. These are the people who make you rethink what you thought you knew about retail, opening you up to new possibilities for your customers, your business and your world.


The Dreamers

Rising stars who might be light on experience, but their heart, energy and passion inspire everyone around them. They're already making waves in their store, company or hometown with their fresh ideas, big dreams and sky-high goals.


The Givers

Inspirational change-makers and big-hearted optimists who make retail shine as a force for good. They see a need and use their skills and resources to fill it to the brim, bringing joy and new opportunities to their companies, communities and the whole wide world.


The Influencers

Champions of retail, bridging the gap between the industry and the rest of the world. Whether they're journalists, activists, innovators or business leaders, these nominees don't work in retail—but they're helping it evolve. They're passionate, persistent and intelligent, and their work is paving the way for innovative retailers everywhere.


The Power Players

Fearless leaders who never shy away from what others may see as insurmountable challenges. These top retail executives have more than just elite status—they have vision, passion and heart. Their forward-looking decisions have a ripple effect across the industry, but they're not afraid to take risks or push boundaries. They guide, inspire and challenge us to move beyond the status quo.


Student Scholarship Recipients

Next Generation Scholarship Top Recipients

Recipients are outstanding students at NRF member schools who are currently pursuing retail careers and have the skills, insights and interest to be successful in the retail industry. A pinnacle achievement for students seeking recognition by the retail community, this scholarship offers an award up to $25,000.

Kaley Suero
University of Pennsylvania

Emma Jumper
Mississippi State University

Sarah Kendzior
University of Minnesota

Student Challenge Top Teams

A business-case competition that allows students to showcase their creativity, business acumen and entrepreneurial spirit to retail executives, finalists get face-to-face interaction with some of retail’s biggest executives at NRF 2018: Retail’s Big Show and a scholarship of up to $5,000.