Apparel, shoes

Vans

 
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OFF THE WALL 

IS A RALLYING CRY FOR SELF-EXPRESSION. FROM ART AND MUSIC TO SKATING AND SURFING WE’RE SHOWCASING THE PEOPLE WHO INSPIRE US WITH THEIR CREATIVITY, AUTHENTICITY, AND PASSION. THIS IS OUR STORY. THIS IS OFF THE WALL.

 
 

In 1944, Paul Van Doren dropped out of eighth grade at age fourteen when he realized he didn’t like school. He had a strong passion for horses and found his way to the race track where he earned the nickname, “Dutch the Clutch” and for just one dollar he would give you the odds of the race. 

Paul’s mother, Rena, did not enjoy the idea of Paul being without a job and not in school, so she insisted he get a job at Randy’s, a one-time shoe manufacturer in the U.S. His job entailed him to sweep the floors and make shoes. He eventually made his way up the ladder and became the Executive Vice President at just 34 years old. Randy’s became one of the biggest shoe manufacturers in the U.S. From Van Doren’s quick success in Massachusetts he was ordered to turn around a failing Randy’s factory in Gardenvale, California that was losing close to a million dollars each month.

 

Paul and his brother Jim, moved their families and settled in Anaheim to help the factory. After just eight months of being in Gardenvale, the factory was functioning better than the one in Massachusetts. Three months after saving the Gardenvale factory, Paul decided he wanted to start his own shoe brand.