Ninety Nine Gifts Exemplary Educators With New Kicks
A new black-owned sneaker company is honoring the work teachers do in and out of the classroom by gifting pair of the unique sneaks to educators.
Jeff Henderson founded Ninety Nine Products just last month in part celebrate educators. Customers can nominate a deserving teacher through the company’s website, and Ninety Nine will send over a pair to the teacher at their school free of charge. Henderson also donates his profits to DonorsChoose.org to specifically aid people working in education, he said.
“This is meant to celebrate a group of people who I think are undervalued,” Henderson told BOSSIP. “We want them to open the box in the classroom because we want the students to see that they are being celebrated.”
Having grown up in a household where his mom worked as a teacher, Henderson said he saw how hard she worked for oftentimes very little fanfare.
And after nearly 20 years working for shoe companies including Nike and Cole Haan, Henderson decided to utilize his relationships with manufacturers to make his own sneaker line – to specifically benefit teachers.
The result is his first shoe, “The Chalk,” ($109) a neon yellow running shoe that is equal parts sporty and cool.
“What I want people to appreciate is that the shoes are really, really good in the first place,” Henderson said. “It’s not your standard cookie cutter shoes. It’s everything you need and more for a technical shoe.”
Following the rollout of the “Chalk” sneaker, Henderson said he plans to drop a boot brand to benefit veterans of the armed forces. He said he’s also got plans for a cross trainer and a casual sneaker in the works.