To celebrate Black History Month, Adidas has tapped a select group of sneaker retailers to honor local Black women who are making a difference in their communities.
For this effort, Adidas Cornerstone Community — the brand’s retailer-driven initiative focused on supporting BIPOC-owned businesses — partnered with Sneex and Clicks in Milwaukee, Premium Goods in Houston, Wish ATL in Atlanta, Ldrs 1354 in Chicago and GBNY in Queens, N.Y.
More from Footwear News
Each retailer, Adidas explained, will work with the brand to produce a piece of content or host a community-driven event to celebrate the woman they selected to honor. These women, according to Adidas, will be honored through its Honoring Black Excellence (HBE) initiative, which is dedicated to recognizing the extraordinary achievements of Black individuals, communities and culture year-round.
Sneex and Clicks, both owned by Eric “Shake” James, will honor Dannette Justus, who has long promoted literacy and reading skills in Wisconsin. Adidas confirmed Sneex and Clicks will host a celebratory event and dinner on Feb. 10 for her, as well as 30 other community leaders who have changed Milwaukee for the better.
“I have been a fan of hers for a while now, watching her stressing to children how important it is to read,” James told FN. “This is special to me because it gives me an opportunity to shine light on someone who’s also doing the work, to let her know that no matter how small the work may seem, it’s needed and appreciated.”
As for Premium Goods in Houston, the retailer will honor Adia Dightman, a bull rider whose grandfather, Myrtis Dightman, is referred to as the Jackie Robinson of the rodeo. Myrtis Dightman was the first Black man or woman to compete at the National Finals Rodeo.
“Adia and her family are the future of this legacy and she represents a new wave in an underrepresented group of Black female trail bosses,” said Jennifer Ford, owner of Premium Goods. “This activation is showing the world that Black cowboys and cowgirls have been around since the beginning. Trail riding is not new to the Black community. Furthermore, there are some queens out here leading.”
Ford said Premium Goods is documenting the Dightman family, female trail bosses and the youth “as an homage to the past, present and future of the Black heritage they created.” This includes a short biopic on the history, as well as the current state and future of the first Black trail riding rodeo team, the Prairie View Trail Riders Association, which will spotlight Adia Dightman and the three other women who lead the team today.
What’s more, Ford said Premium Goods is also honoring these women trail bosses with a kick off pampering on Feb. 23, courtesy of Adidas.
Wish ATL has selected Pretty Girls Sweat founder and CEO Aeshia DeVore as its honoree. Pretty Girls Sweat is a wellness company focused on inclusion with a goal of making fitness fun, accessible and affordable.
To honor DeVore, Wish ATL will host an event featuring a trainer-led workout session, a set from a local DJ, healthy refreshments and bites from Local Green Atlanta and an educational workshop.
“Her focus with Pretty Girls Sweat aligns with our ‘Wish You Well’ initiatives and it was a perfect opportunity to work together. Her spirit and drive to surround our community with knowledge about health and wellness is super important and we are delighted to help amplify her voice in any way we can,” said Julie Hogg, co-owner and CEO of Wish ATL. “We also are ecstatic to work with the young ladies at GSU and AUC campuses on this project. Health and wellbeing are important to us, especially in our fast paced environment, so any opportunity we have to learn and grow from like-minded leaders is so valuable.”
Ldrs 1354 in Chicago will host a three-day event to honor FlashHoops founder Veronica Peterson. FlashHoops is a mobile platform focused on helping children learn math while receiving basketball skill training from their favorite athlete. This event, which will take place from Feb. 23-25, will include a basketball tournament, panels and a workforce development experience that aims to provide community members with new opportunities.
And GBNY in Queens, N.Y., will honor licensed mental health counselor Grace Lekan Lamour, who focuses on self confidence and self perception. To honor her, the retailer will host a workshop on self love and positive affirmations for students of Girls on the Run, which she will lead.
About the Author
Peter Verry is the Senior News and Features Editor for Athletic and Outdoor at Footwear News. He oversees coverage of the two fast-paced and ultracompetitive markets, which includes conducting in-depth interviews with industry leaders and writing stories on sneakers and outdoor shoes. He is a lifelong sneaker addict (and shares his newest purchases via @peterverry on Instagram) and spends most of his free time on a trail. He holds an M.A. in journalism from Hofstra University and can be reached at email@example.com.
Best of Footwear News