Mission and Values


JCPenney was founded in 1902 with one simple rule – to treat others as we would like to be treated. The Golden Rule was the name of our first store in Kemmerer, Wyoming, and it set the standard by which we have operated for more than 119 years. The name of our stores has evolved, but our focus on putting customers and associates at the heart of what we do remains unchanged.

Company Information
Our History

“It is always the start that requires the greatest effort.” – James Cash Penney 

 JCPenney’s history is bound to the legacy of our founder, James Cash Penney, who established honor, courage, service, and cooperation as guiding principles in the life of a JCPenney associate. These values have been at the forefront of our Company history and continue to guide us into the future.

In 2004, JCPenney donated its corporate archives and the papers of James Cash Penney (1875-1971) to Southern Methodist University’s DeGoyler Library, which include more than 20,000 photographs, and 1,500 linear feet of correspondence, speeches, ledgers, catalogs, and Company publications documenting more than 100 years of corporate history.

Our Brands

As one of the nation’s largest retailers of apparel, home, jewelry, and beauty merchandise, JCPenney has a portfolio of private and national brands of remarkable quality and exceptional value. Many of our private brands like Liz Claiborne®, Stafford®, okie dokie™, and Worthington™ are so well known that customers don’t realize they are exclusive to JCPenney!

JCPenney has a long history of building brands and consistently developing and introducing exciting new products and brands to meet the ever-evolving needs of our customers and their families.

JCPenney has recognized and supported supplier diversity since 1972 when the Company became a founding member of the National Minority Supplier Development Council (NMSDC) and the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC). Through strategic partnerships, we proudly encourage the growth of diverse businesses while investing in the communities we serve. Learn more about our supplier diversity program here.


JCPenney has a legacy of developing strong, vibrant communities. With a commitment to helping close the opportunity gap, we are passionate about providing students in under-resourced communities the tools for success. We connect Company, community, and cause by investing our time and resources in three primary impact areas: professional clothing needs, youth programming, and career readiness support. Through the volunteer spirit of our associates and strategic investment in the work of our nonprofit partners, JCPenney and the JCPenney Communities Foundation are working to improve the communities where we live and work.

Corporate Responsibility

We embrace our responsibility to our associates, customers, and communities to treat each other, and the world in which we live and operate, as we want to be treated. JCPenney has built a legacy of ethical and responsible business conduct for more than a century and our standards are proudly reflected in our Statement of Business Ethics and our Supplier Principles. We also practice environmental sustainability principles and are continually striving to be a more eco-conscious retailer.

Learn more about our efforts here.

Inclusion & Diversity

Inclusion & Diversity is the journey of growth that we take together every day to ensure our customers, associates, and vendors of all backgrounds, including those with disabilities feel safe, valued, and respected at JCPenney. Through education, accountability, and investment, we courageously strive to inspire our customers, cultivate confident leaders, innovate through strategic partnerships, and serve our communities.

Our associates are leading the way to shape a more transparent and intentional Company by building on existing programs, creating annual commitments, and supporting the hiring, development, and advancement of diverse talent across our organization.

Every day we strive to share our commitments and work with you, our customer, and continue to educate, challenge, and inspire you to do the same in your local community.  

Working for JCPenney

We are committed to building an equitable, inclusive, and diverse space in which a results-minded culture can thrive. Our associates embody the JCPenney Values of service, passion, energy, inclusion and family in everything we do.

As a dedicated team of more than 50,000 people around the world, our associates are the foundation of our success – their passion, energy, and talent fuel our Company’s growth. In return, we promise to continually invest in training and development that fuels their personal and professional growth. 

Working at JCPenney means joining a dedicated team of associates who are encouraged to be uniquely themselves in a collaborative and inclusive environment where careers prosper, accomplishments are celebrated, and diversity flourishes. We continue to refine processes and workflows to support a collaborative culture while transitioning to a hybrid workforce model in our corporate locations.


Our customer is at the center of all that we do, and we strive to provide a safe and secure shopping environment while serving your needs. Step inside a JCPenney and explore your own style with the latest apparel, accessories, footwear, beauty, and jewelry trends. Elevate the everyday with stylish home merchandise from our loved private and national brands.

Our stores play a vital role in the communities they serve by providing many services outside of apparel, including Salon, Optical, Portrait, and in-store events at the Kids Zone or Suit Up shopping experiences with students from colleges and universities across the country. Find your local store and discover all that JCPenney has to offer.

Omnichannel Experience

JCPenney is on a mission to meet the digital needs of the 21st-century shopper. We are creating an engaging customer experience in our 650+ stores across the U.S. and Puerto Rico and on our flagship, jcp.com. We're making the shopping experience easy and seamless across all channels and devices with a mobile-first design of our website, new and innovative in-store experiences and formats, and multiple fulfillment methods such as in-store and curbside pickup, and ship to home.