John Cronin, a young man with Down syndrome from Long Island, co-founded John’s Crazy Socks. In just two months the online sock store has reached 1,000 customers.
The business was inspired by John's love of, what he calls, his "crazy socks." He started collecting socks and eventually—with the help of his dad and fellow co-founder, Mark. X. Cronin—was able to start a business of his own.
And these aren't just any socks, John's Crazy Socks carries a variety of fun prints and colors, such as socks with a coffee, barbecue, or bacon theme, just to name a few. It also carries socks for causes, such as the recently sold out
Autism Awareness Socks, which benefit the Nassau/Suffolk Branch of the Autism Society of America. The store's best-selling pair are the recently released Down Syndrome Socks, which give back to the National Down Syndrome Society and the Association for Children with Down Syndrome. John's Crazy Socks also sells Blue Whale Socks that help the Whaling Museum and Education Center of Cold Spring Harbor, as well as Breast Cancer Awareness Socks, which support the Dr. Susan Love Research Foundation.
Based out of Huntington, in Suffolk County, John's Crazy Socks continues its mission of giving back by donating a portion of its proceeds to the
Special Olympics. John is a Special Olympic athlete and competes in snowshoe, basketball, track, soccer, floor hockey, and bowling.
John Cronin with his dad, Mark X. Cronin, at the Special Olympics.
“We selected the Special Olympics as our first charity partner because they’ve played such a huge role in John’s development. When we began offering socks in other areas of awareness, we respectfully selected charity partners that properly aligned with our mission," Mark stated in a press release.
John is a shining example of just how much a person with Down syndrome can contribute to the work place. "We focus on what John can do, not what he can’t," his father said in a press release. "John has long had a love for crazy and fun socks, so he helps pick the socks sold in the store...John writes a thank-you note for each customer and we add some candy sweets as a surprise thank you. Our customers love the personal touch and that has contributed to our rapid success."
In terms of success, John focuses on how his socks make people feel. "We’re making people happy with socks. The more we can make people happy, the more socks we sell," he said in a statement.
Watch the video below where John demonstrates the detail that goes into each order:
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Main image: John Cronin, co-founder of John's Crazy Socks. Courtesy John's Crazy Socks