According to the company, the soon-to-be-shuttered stores postedlosses of $5.1 million for the trailing 12 months ended July 31,2005. Whitehall plans to run inventory-liquidation sales at thesestores to generate cash flow, which is expected to generate morethan $14 million. Daniel Levy, director and interim chief executiveofficer, says the sale will give the company's new CEO, Robert L.Baumgardner, positive news to report moving forward.

"We believe that the Company's decision to close 77 unprofitableoperations will provide Bob and his team a strong foundation ofstores with attractive merchandise assortments," Levy said in astatement. "This trimmed down store platform should provide astrong base for Bob to begin his tenure."

With plans to join Whitehall by Nov. 14, Baumgardner hasaccepted the position to lead the company out of its embattledpast. Baumgardner is currently president of Little Switzerland, awholly owned subsidiary of Tiffany & Co. He is also a formerSVP of Bailey Banks and Biddle, a division of Zale Corp.Baumgardner fills a seat that was not long ago left vacant. InSeptember, just weeks before she was about to commence full-timeemployment as the Whitehall's CEO, the company received a letterfrom Beryl Raffadvising that she was resigning from all positions. The letter cameon the heels of NYSE questions arising from unusual marketactivity.

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