Skateboarding is shaped by all sorts of people. Some you know well, the likes of Mullen, Gonz, Natas and Hawk. Others you've likely heard the name of but would rely on the older generations to fill you in, think Alan Gelfand, Neil Blender or Henry Sanchez. Then there's the guys behind the scenes you've literally no clue existed.
But this is it, just because you haven't heard of somebody doesn't mean their impact hasn't been seismic. a lot of kids today won't know who Steve Rocco is but he shaped the entire notion of "skater owned" industry. What about Fausto Vitello? Argentinian business man and publisher who happened to found Independent, Thrasher and Deluxe (amongst others). Then there is Sandy Bodecker.
Unlike everybody else in this write up Sandy Bodecker wasn't actually a skateboarder himself but that's not to diminish his impact on skateboarding. The Nike executive may not have spent his youth waxing kerbs behind his local Aldi but his dedication to doing it "right" by skateboarders is the reason Nike SB is so highly regarded today. Here was a character, in the true sense of the word, that immersed himself in our world so as to understand it as best he could and, when you take a step back, it becomes massively apparent just how much he changed the way we all look at shoes.
Sandy passed away from throat cancer aged 66 a year ago this month, this is Nike SB's tribute to a man who, quite simply, changed the game.