A rare and exclusive interview with our head honcho, Don Weiss!
Meet Don Weiss, one of the co-founders behind the Blowfish Malibu brand, and President of the company. We can thank him for ultimately bringing Blowfish’s comfortable and stylish shoes into closets around the world! While our other co-founder, Stephen Hoyt, is conceptualizing new designs with the creative team, Don is eternally educating our team about shoes and selling the brand. See, Don is a marketing and sales guru. He is our #1 brand ambassador (and fan!) and is always on the lookout for innovative ways to make customers (you!) happy while promoting the brand.
Read on to learn how Don got into the business, his passions, and where we can find him when he’s not at work.
How did you come to be one of the founders of Blowfish Malibu?
After I graduated high school, I got a job delivering shoes in a van on Long Island, [N.Y.], and it was for a company called Bridgetown Flood. I was literally loading shoes down a conveyor belt and down at the bottom receiving the shoes was Steve Madden. That was my first intro into the shoe business, and then my job evolved and I started selling on the phone. That kicked me off working in the industry — it was my very first job. From then on, my career evolved into more sales and sales management at various other brands.
Thirteen years ago, Stephen Hoyt and I decided to take a leap of faith and use our skills to create a brand of our own, and that’s how Blowfish Malibu came to be.
When you aren’t the big boss, what do you enjoy doing in your spare time?
Sailing. I’ve always been passionate about the ocean and how it clears my mind. There’s nothing I love better. If I’m not at the office, now you know where to find me!
If you weren’t working in footwear, what kind of career would you have?
I’d own a restaurant and cook there, or just be a chef. I have a passion for food and like to try new recipes. When I’m home I try to cook as much as I can. My family says my food isn’t bad at all — they’re the best critics!
Do you have an all-time favorite Blowfish Malibu style?
That’s a tough one to pin point but I really like style, Granola. It emulates such a casual comfortable feel and looks great on everyone. It really feels like it’s an “us” shoe.
What’s your favorite thing about California?
The weather and beaches for sure. I love the fact that I can sail all year around. Back east I owned a boat and I had to take it out of the water four times a year. In California I don’t have that problem at all!
Where is your favorite place to travel and why?
I love Cabo and Hawaii. I’m a surfer at heart. (Can you tell I’m an ocean person?!)
What is the last song you played on repeat?
Anything by John Mayer.
If you could give advice to any budding entrepreneur, what would it be?
Gather the best people you can and let them do their thing. Get everyone together and let them have a voice. That’s what we do at Blowfish Malibu!
Thanks Don! We’ll catch up with you again soon.
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