Each year, Footwear News celebrates the brands, retailers and personalities that influenced and shaped the shoe industry. As the Footwear News Achievement Awards celebrate its 35th anniversary this year, the event is returning to a live format with a ceremony in New York on Nov. 30.
This year’s honorees include both first-time recipients and past winners.
Crocs’ Classic Clog has been named Shoe of the Year. After taking home Brand of the Year in 2020, the clog’s popularity has been propelled further by celebrity admirers like Nicki Minaj and Ariana Grande and collaborations with Justin Bieber, Salehe Bembury and Diplo.
Both Hoka One One and On are receiving Brand of the Year. As consumers took up running and walking during the pandemic, Hoka One One’s businesses has benefited, and parent company Deckers believes Hoka can become a billion-dollar brand. Meanwhile, On’s net sales have been expanding at a compound annual growth rate of 85 percent since its founding in 2010. In 2021, On launched an initial public offering on the New York Stock Exchange.
Dick’s Sporting Goods also leaned into the pandemic’s active and outdoor boost with updates to its physical stores in 2021. Efforts to drive foot traffic—including its interactive House of Sport stores and an upcoming Public Lands concept—have earned Dick’s Retailer of the Year. And on the heels of its $2.5 billion Reebok acquisition, Authentic Brands Group has been named Company of the Year.
Adidas is being honored with the Sustainability Leadership Award. This year, the company committed to using sustainable materials in at least 60 percent of its products. It also expanded its alliance with Parley for the Oceans, aiming to create 17 million shoes with plastic recovered from beaches.
Newcomer brand Larroudé, started by Barneys New York alum Marina Larroudé and her husband Ricardo Larroudé, has been dubbed the Launch of the Year.
The awards have named A Ma Maniére x Air Jordan 3 the best Collaboration of the Year. FN’s Designer of the Year is Jerry Lorenzo, the owner and founder of streetwear label Fear of God, who is being recognized for his partnerships with brands like Zegna and Adidas. And stylist Law Roach—who works with clients including Zendaya, Priyanka Chopra, Addison Rae, Tiffany Haddish and Anya Taylor-Joy, has been chosen as Style Influencer of the Year.
Kith founder Ronnie Fieg is FNAA Person of the Year. In 2021, Fieg was brought on as category creator at Clarks and debuted a new 8th Street label for Clarks Originals. He also signed the 15 Percent Pledge, supporting diversity in retail. Fieg was previously named Collaborator of the Year in 2017, and he continues to partner with footwear brands like Vans, Adidas, Nike and Birkenstock.
Another personality being honored this year is Blake Krueger, the CEO of Wolverine Worldwide Inc. since 2007, who is receiving the Hall of Fame award. During his time as CEO, the group has grown from three to 12 brands. Later this year, Krueger—who has been at Wolverine since 1993—will become executive chairman, passing on the CEO title to Brendan Hoffman.
Along with these names, Footwear News will be revealing additional awardees.