RESPECT. Interview: Vans Sr. Marketing Manager of Action Sports, Justin Villano, talks about a decade of partnering with STOKED, Vans’ favorite sneaker and more

Image Credit: Vans

Vans has been a longtime supporter of STOKED’s message of inclusion and community-driven methods, serving as a proud partner and supporter of the organization for over 10 years. In 2022, the Vans x STOKED partnership will expand even further. Founded by entrepreneur Steve Larosiliere and action sports personality Selema Masekela, STORED is a community-driven nonprofit that combines one-on-one mentorship with the joy (and adrenaline) of action sports to help underserved youth in BIPOC reach their potential.

Image Credit: Vans

Based in New York, Chicago, and Los Angeles, STOKED has worked with more than 6,000 kids and 4,000 mentors since its inception, using action sports like skateboarding, snowboarding, and surfing as “safe spaces” for kids. learning and personal growth. Kids on a STOKED program learn more than how to kickflip or catch a wave – they’re taught job skills, life lessons, and the importance of staying active, too.

Image Credit: Vans

The latest chapter of Vans’ partnership with STOKED aims to achieve two primary goals: to increase BIPOC’s participation and representation in action sports and to provide STOKED participants with access, resources and educational programs. To achieve these goals, Vans sponsors skate activations at STOKED locations in New York and Chicago, supporting STOKED’s after-school leadership development programs and weekend skate/snowboard/surfing programs and encouraging its employees to serve as STOKED mentors through a dynamic “Career Pipeline” program that shows STOKED youth some of the career possibilities in the world of action sports.

Nearly 30 Vans employees have already joined the “Career Pipeline” program, and Vans athletes have also lent their support to STOKED – professional snowboarder Patrick Moore is a key STOKED ambassador who has recruited other members from Team Vans Snow like Jill Perkins, Bryan Iguchi, and Hana Beaman, who helped STOKED raise an additional $100,000 through its annual fundraising campaign in 2021. STOKED also supports Vans by leading DEI (diversity, equity and inclusion) with Vans staff and the broader action sports industry through employees and athletes. workshops.

Image Credit: Vans

To learn more about STOKED, visit fanned.org. We had the chance to speak with Vans Sr. Marketing Manager of Action Sports, Justin Villano to learn more about the partnership. Enter the audio of the interview below.

Interview Highlights:

Celebrating 10 years of partnership with Stoked.

Sponsorship of Skate Activation’s in New York and Chicago.

Main goal they wanted to achieve.

Favorite Vans sneaker/model.

Favorite hip-hop album or artist.

Objectives for 2022.

What RESPECT. Means for him.


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Ayana Rached

a dedicated sneaker + sports + music writer who will keep you up to date with the latest news. Email: [email protected] | Twitter: @ajrbcg_


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