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J. Michael Prince, a global retail executive who has worked in senior leadership positions with some of the most iconic sports and fashion brands in the world, was the recipient of East Central University’s Distinguished Alumnus Award during a recent reception held in his honor.

An Ada native and graduate of Latta High School, Prince has taken leadership positions with renowned brands such as Nike, Cole Hann, Converse, Hurley, Guess? and Umbro.

His accomplishments as an executive have ranged from overseeing a $4 billion portfolio of brands for Nike to expanding Cole Haan’s billion-dollar global retail and digital footprint internationally.

Prince graduated at the top of his class from ECU in 1993 while majoring in accounting.

He started his professional career in Oklahoma with his first job at PriceWaterhouse where he earned his CPA.  He later worked for two of Oklahoma’s most prestigious companies, Devon Energy and BancFirst.  He most recently served as the president and board member of Cole Haan, the global fashion brand. 

As president of the company, he provided executive leadership over commercial, operational and financial aspects of the business including the Company’s 300 global retail stores, digital commerce and extensive international and licensing businesses as well as new product categories. 

Prince has both public and private company executive and board experience and has worked closely with the Wall Street and private equity communities. Prince has also worked with sports icons such as Dwyane Wade, formerly of the Miami Heat and now with the Chicago Bulls, as well as global collaborations with American Airlines. 

A member of the Choctaw Nation, he is also a strategic advisor working across multiple

industries partnering with Family Offices and Native American tribes on potential marketplace and investment opportunities.

While at ECU, Prince was also vice president of the ECU Student Body. He earned his MBA from Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business and currently serves on the Board. He is a donor to ECU’s Harland C. Stonecipher School of Business and has established scholarships at Duke University and the Choctaw Nation.

Prince has been a featured speaker at numerous collegiate events for Duke University, University of Oklahoma and ECU, discussing the topics of global brands, international business, and entrepreneurship. He is an advisory board member and investor of Toronto International Fashion Week (TIFW). Prince is also a member of New York Metro’s Young Presidents Organization and was honored in 2016 with the State of Creativity Award by Oklahoma’s Governor.  He and his wife Amanda reside in West Palm Beach, Florida and have two sons, Coleman and Benjamin. 

In addition to accepting the Distinguished Alumnus Award, Prince delivered the keynote address at one of ECU’s two commencement ceremonies on May 6.


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