Mary Dillon

CEO
Ulta Beauty
Mary Dillon, the CEO of Ulta Beauty, in one of her stores

Mary Dillon found herself face-to-face with opportunity: Even with three teenage daughters, she wasn’t taking full advantage of what Ulta Beauty had to offer. And she knew she wasn’t alone. In 2013, Dillon left her role as CEO of U.S. Cellular to take on the challenge of raising Ulta’s profile and building on its success.

By late 2015, Ulta was achieving record earnings with revenue up 21 percent over 2014 and had added more than 5,300 new jobs. Ulta Beauty’s strong performance is guided by six strategic imperatives that Dillon and her leadership team developed and are now implementing with a commitment to continuous improvement and enterprise-wide collaboration.

With a track record and passion for leveraging consumer insights and customer-focused strategies, Dillon has also committed to strengthening the company’s brand awareness by utilizing digital, social and broad-scale advertising to drive brand engagement and increase the emotional connection with guests. If Ulta’s revamped loyalty program, now 17 million members strong, is any indicator, Dillon is well on her way to surpassing her goals.