Ted English

Who Is Ted English?

Ted English is an American businessman in the retail and wholesale industries. English is chair of Bob's Discount Furniture, an American furniture chain. He served as the company's chief executive officer (CEO) between 2006 and 2016. Prior to this, English headed TJX Companies as its CEO between 2000 and 2005, when he helped increase the company's sales and profits considerably, opening more than 900 new stores and employing more than 50,000 people, and led the company through several acquisitions.

English studied at Northeastern University and sits on the board of several retail companies, including Burlington Stores.

Key Takeaways

  • Ted English is an American businessman who worked in the retail and wholesale industries.
  • English is chair and former CEO of Bob's Discount Furniture.
  • He was also the CEO of TJX Companies between 2000 and 2005.
  • English successfully navigated TJX through the 2001 economic downturn in the U.S., through merchandising and innovation.
  • English is a board member and trustee for several corporations, including Bob's Discount Furniture and BJ's Wholesale Club.
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Alison Czinkota / Investopedia

Understanding Ted English

Edmund (Ted) A. English was born on April 25, 1953, and earned an undergraduate degree in business administration from Northeastern University in 1976. He began his career as a stock room worker at Filene's Basement before becoming a buyer for the department store.

He then moved over to TJX Companies (TJX), the parent company of TJ Maxx and Marshalls, to train and hire workers through the federal government's Welfare to Work program. His efforts led to TJX employing several thousand welfare recipients. English was promoted to president and CEO of TJX in 2000 based on his success with the work program.

As CEO, he focused on merchandising, innovation, predicting customer shopping habits, and directing ongoing growth. His primary management goal was to capture "customers during hard times and then keep[ing] them when times get better." English analyzed and applied new and innovative merchandising principles to the store's operations in order to achieve this goal and to successfully navigate the company through the 2001 economic downturn. He was instrumental in leading the company's acquisitions of A.J. Wright, and the Winners and HomeSense chains.

He took over as the CEO of Bob's Discount Furniture between November 2006 and March 2016. Under his leadership, the retail furniture chain more than doubled the number of locations nationwide and nearly tripled sales, placing it among the top fifteen retail furniture outlets in the United States. He served as interim CEO from June to November 2020 and now serves as chair of the board for the company.

Ted English volunteered with Shackleton School, where he used his time to help students acquire leadership skills.

Special Considerations

Seven TJX employees died during the September 11th terrorist attacks. Ted English was recognized and honored with the Doctor of Laws degree from Framingham State University for his leadership during this time.

English sits on the board of a number of major corporations along with Bob's Discount Furniture. He sits on the board of Burlington Stores (BURL) and BJs Wholesale Club (BJ). English is also a trustee for Natixis Funds.

The former executive is also a member of the advisory board of directors for the Special Olympics of Massachusetts and a member of the board of trustees of the Boston Medical Center. He was also a member of the board of trustees at Northeastern University.

Article Sources

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  1. Bob's Discount Furniture. "Bob’s Discount Furniture Appoints William G. (Bill) Barton as CEO." Accessed May 25, 2021.

  2. U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. "The TJX Companies, Inc. Announces Resignation of Ted English as Chief Executive Officer; Ben Cammarata Named Acting CEO." Accessed May 25, 2021.

  3. Natixis. "Ted J. English." Accessed May 25, 2021.

  4. Burlington. "Board of Directors." May 25, 2021.

  5. Special Olympics Massachusetts. "Advisory Board of Directors 2021." Accessed May 25, 2021.

  6. Boston Medical Center. "Leadership." Accessed May 25, 2021.

  7. Northeastern University. "Governing Boards and Officers of Northeastern." Accessed May 25, 2021.