The People’s Movement: A “conscious” entrepreneurial leap with SDSI
By Chuck Scott
Late-morning sunlight streams through two skylights, warming the two-story building just off the Cedros Avenue Design District in Solana Beach.
Up in the loft office, CEO Kevin Flanagan is deep in discussion with design and marketing guru Mark Wystrach about their company’s new line of shoes for next spring. Flanagan jots down notes on a whiteboard resting on the floor as Wystrach paces, taking care not to step on the nearly two dozen color printouts of proposed shoe designs neatly aligned near his feet.
Satisfied they have enough new offerings for both their men’s and women’s lines, they wrap up the business meeting with a heartfelt hug.
Welcome to The People’s Movement, a nine-month-old shoe company with a mission to produce products inspired by the working class in an environmentally conscious manner.
Running a start-up has been a major change for Flanagan, whose background includes 16 years with several of the top actions sports brands in the country and who had risen to Vice President of Marketing at Reef before leaving to start his own company.
“I’d always wanted to be an entrepreneur – an inventor or an entrepreneur, is what I thought I’d be as a child,” Flanagan says. When a hoped-for promotion to the president’s position at Reef failed to materialize, he said it seemed like the perfect catalyst to pursue that passion.
“I really viewed not getting that job as a blessing,” he says. “It allowed me to have the runway and the freedom to follow my dream.”