How did Black Rock Built get its name?
There is a symbolic reverence that BlackRock shares with my family. In many ways, the foundation of our family is built on Black Rock. I’ve been going to Maui since my early 20’s and in fact, the first real vacation I ever took, was to Maui. I specifically love the resort area in Kaanapali, featuring one of the best beaches in the world and anchored by the iconic, Black Rock. I loved it so much that I bought a timeshare week from the Maui Marriott, and then I bought another week, and then another.
This quickly became my happy place. The place I could come to disconnect, relax and reconnect to something infinitely better. The spirit of Aloha I feel in this magical land is undeniable. However, Kaanapali is not the only thing anchored by Black Rock, my family is as well. I proposed to my wife here, we’ve watched our kids grow up here, we’ve built a home here, we’ve met dear friends here. Some of the most memorable times together have been snorkeling around Black Rock or jumping off of it. We’ve been lucky enough to show many of our loved ones this island, and many, for their first time. My kids were even baptized into the art of “Cliff Jumping”, at Black Rock.
The other special aspect of Black Rock Built is the story of the photograph the logo was inspired by. The coolest part about that photo, is that my mom took it, Constance Reid. She was a professional photographer based in Napa at the time, and when I finally got the opportunity to bring her out to Maui years ago, she spent most of her time driving the island and photographing the beautiful land and waterscapes. One of those places was Black Rock. She wanted to capture through photographs what people did there, which is to jump off it, and shoot it at sunset. She asked me if I would be willing to jump off, maybe because I used to be a cliff jumper or maybe because she just wanted to shoot her son. I told her I was getting too old for this kinda thing, but since it’s my mom asking, I would do it. The deal was that I do one jump, and for her to do her best to get a shot. So she stayed on the beach, 100 yards away, and I swam out. When I climbed to the top, I looked over to her in the distance and gave her the nod. She signaled back, and I let it rip. She only took one shot..... and this photo is what it ended up turning out to be. I remember when I got out of the water, she said “You gotta see this!” And I said, “WOW, what a shot!!!” She ended up winning awards for the photo she entitled, "Fear is the Thief of Dreams". As I started to think about building the Black Rock Built brand, I thought it would be cool to incorporate it into the logo somehow.
I like to think our family is Black Rock Built. Meaning that we are built on the Aloha spirit, anchored in timeless tradition and ohana.
Why I Created Black Rock Built?
I have always wanted to start an apparel company. Over the years, I've helped create various types of apparel for my previous brands, but the focus was more to drive marketing and brand awareness than it was for the apparel itself. If I wasn’t wearing those brands apparel, I was wearing surf gear and more specifically, brands that were Hawaii centric. After spending more and more time in Maui over the last 20 years, I knew that if I did create an apparel company, it would be island based. Over the past couple years,
I sold many of my other businesses with the goal of spending more of my time in Maui. Then in early 2020, Covid hit, and I watched first hand the exodus of visitors from the island and the devastation that was created in its wake. To watch one of the world's top tourist destinations shut down for 8 months was unbelievable. With the island's economy largely based around tourism, many residents lost their jobs and their livelihood.
Maui has given so much to me and my family and I have always wanted to find a way to give back. Based on these circumstances, there isn't a better time than now, the year 2021 to make it happen. Black Rock Built has provided the perfect opportunity to add real value to the community and its visitors by offering a uniquely Maui apparel company named after the iconic Black Rock where 100% of the profits will be reinvested back into the community. By supporting the Black Rock Built brand, you're not only getting fresh threads to represent your love of Maui, you're also giving back to the local community and helping restore the spirit of Aloha that makes this magical island so special.