Celebrating the 40th year in business as FootWorks and the 30th Anniversary of the Corporate Run, the South Florida community fondly remembers John “Hans” Huseby. The April 23, 2015 Mercedes Benz Corporate Run was dedicated to him, and as this issue goes to press, the annual South Miami Hospital Twilight 5K will have been held. The Twilight 5K which goes through the streets of our town center is also in honor of “Papa Hans” and the legacy which is the community’s to enjoy. – jes ______________________________
Laurie Huseby is sitting at a South Miami dining spot discussing her family and her family business. Laurie and her late husband John (“Hans”) Huseby built a successful sports shoe business that has been thriving on Sunset Drive for forty years.
Of her business life without her husband who passed away on November 28, 2014 Laurie said, “My plate has been pretty full without Hans.”
For Laurie and son JP, the business of running FootWorks, one of south Florida’s most popular retail locations for runners, walkers, marathoners, tri-athletes and fitness lovers, continues without the assistance of one of the company’s founders and most assiduous managers. Add Team FootWorks, the non-profit they established to sponsor and manage marathons and there is more than enough to do.
The store began under Laurie’s father, Sheldon Boehm, who opened a shop on Sunset in 1973 sold what was then the newest buzz in footwear, the Earth Shoe. Hans was an athlete and a runner who had married his high school sweetheart, Laurie Boehm. After moving to Miami from Minnesota, Hans and Laurie began to work side-by-side in Mr. Boehm’s store; from that beginning came the FootWorks concept with a focus on runners and kindred athletes.
“We take great pride in finding the right shoe with the right fit. For us, it is all about customer service,” said Laurie.
In addition to an array of clothing, shoes, accessories and other products customized for athletes, the people at FootWorks demonstrate their dedication to superb customer service by being knowledgeable about new product information, the latest concerning cutting-edge advances, and detailed information about what constitutes the best fit in footwear. They are in the business to help keep customers on track with their fitness regimen.
Good corporate citizens, Laurie and Hans initiated a non-profit organization in 1994 to promote health and fitness known as Team Footworks. In addition to sponsoring many marathons, their generosity includes a well-developed sense of giving back to the community; they have contributed over $1.5m to a variety of charities over the years.
One of the benefits offered by Team Footworks is a sports clinic, the ever-popular Fitness 101 Training program. Aimed at developing a love for regular exercise, Fitness 101 is a seven-week training regimen that convenes twice weekly to run and walk in short intervals, eventually building up to longer intervals of running. For those who don’t like to or cannot run, there is a group dedicated to walking. The program helps build endurance while developing camaraderie among the participants; many of those involved go on to run or walk in marathons, half-marathons and triathlon races.
In the tradition of carrying on the family business, son John (JP) has been working for FootWorks since he was 15. “I started working there because I loved the idea of getting out of high school early at 1 PM to go help in the store,” says JP. Years ago, he began to take a more active role in helping his parents and he is passionate about carrying their legacy forward into the future.
Forty years of hard work, passion, excellent customer service, and a devotion to community is a lot upon which to reflect.
“I take a lot of pride in what Hans and I have done together. I am grateful for our many years together,” said Laurie.
FootWorks is located at 5724 Sunset Drive and 1935 West Avenue, Miami Beach. Visit them online at http://footworksmiami.com.