Jaclyn Kaczmarek, Counsel at Ulta Beauty, has worked her way up through the company and will never forget where she started: as a cashier in Orland Park at Ulta's seventh store ever. Ulta now has over 1200 locations in all 50 states, and Jaclyn has been there to see it all.
As a 2L, working as a store associate to put herself through law school, Jaclyn had a chance encounter that sparked a long future with Ulta. She was ringing out an Ulta employee who turned out to be a corporate paralegal. Jaclyn was looking for a summer job. The two exchanged contact information, and that introduction led to Jaclyn being hired as a summer intern—the legal department’s first ever. She's been with Ulta's legal team ever since, transitioning to a paralegal role and eventually promoted to counsel. She now handles legal matters related to intellectual property, marketing, merchandising, operations, and regulatory and compliance, among other areas. Jaclyn's deep passion for the company's culture and mission keeps her eager to help the company meet its ever-expanding goals.
Jaclyn's unique background allows her to provide invaluable insight to Ulta's legal team. She is a beauty guru and a former store associate, and having that business knowledge is immensely helpful in understanding the impact of legal decisions and policies. Plus, she has relationships with people throughout the company from the ground up—she knows who to go to for what, and in that way is uniquely positioned to stay current with a rapidly growing business and changing industry.
Jaclyn co-started Ulta's externship program with Ulta’s now General Counsel and works hard each year to improve it. "I started as an intern, so giving back to the students is huge for me," she says. Without a similar program, she wouldn't be where she is today. The growth and success of that program over the years is something she is very proud of.
Promoting the Success of Women
Jaclyn's involvement with the externship program also provides her with an opportunity to help other women. She makes an effort to hire women law students and serves as a mentor and role model. Additionally, Ulta's culture as a whole focuses on women inspiring women. The company is 92% female, the executive team is 40% female, and the board of directors is 55% female. "We really put a focus on elevating women and their careers." This is particularly important to Jaclyn within the legal profession.
Jaclyn's number one love is her dog, Louie the "labradane"—a rescue who is part Labrador, part Great Dane. You can check him out here. She also loves meeting new people and other attorneys. She has found ChiWIP to be a welcoming group that shares her value of promoting the careers of women, and she encourages other ChiWIP members to connect with her.
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