We had the good fortune of connecting with Evan Dittig and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Evan, is your business focused on helping the community? If so, how?
My business, Shred.Co, is a skateboard instructional program whose mission is to improve physical, mental and social-emotional wellbeing on both a local and global scale through skateboarding.
We provide guidance through instructional lessons, multi-level skate classes, in-school assemblies, after-school enrichment programs, municipal partnerships and more. Portions of profit raised are redirected into social impact projects such as equipment donations, skatepark fundraising, therapeutic skate clinics, free skate lessons, demonstrations and charitable events in the community and internationality.
We believe that everyone deserves an opportunity to learn how to skateboard. Socioeconomic status, physical or mental impairments, and/or inaccessibility to equipment shouldn’t exclude anyone from the skateboarding experience.
Each season, Shred.Co hosts a number of ‘All Abilities’ skate clinics that create a safe skate space for individuals with ADHD, on the Autism Spectrum or with other sensory and specific needs. We also host ‘Giveback Events’ where we donate skateboard equipment and teach the basic yet necessary skills needed to skateboard to disadvantaged youth in our home state of New Jersey.
In addition, each year we ship skateboard decks, trucks, wheels, hardware and shoes to budding skate organizations overseas in nations where skate equipment is difficult to access. Some of our past shipments have reached organizations in the nations of Cuba, Zambia, Nicaragua, Angola, Mozambique and South Africa.
What should our readers know about your business?
When I graduated St John’s University in 2016 I had no idea what I wanted to do for a career, but I did know I wanted to keep my passion for skateboarding in my life and I wanted to help others. Using my degree I business and some rough plans I drafted up in school, I started Skate.Now LLC in order to share my passion for skateboarding with others. We started our teaching private lessons and small classes and over time the classes got bigger and the business grew!
Today we work with over 900 different skaters annually with skate programs and partnerships in Schools, YMCAs, and recreation departments across New Jersey. A major pillar of my business has been giving back and the social impact that can be accomplished through skateboarding. One of my proudest accomplishments is the donation of over 180 pairs of skate shoes and 10 complete skateboards to a grassroots skate movement in rural Zambia.
An early challenge I faced was a critical name change and rebranding about a year in due to a trademark dispute. I used the motivation I get from the kids we work with and my skater-mentality to bounce back and push through this challenge and persevere. Similarly to a skateboarder getting back up and trying again after falling down on a trick.
The future looks bright for Shred.Co as each season we expand our team, our territory and the number of skaters we reach. We look forward for what is in store for this upcoming season!
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
If a friend was visiting Montclair, NJ for a week, I would highly recommend visiting Court Skatepark for a skate session, grabbing a bite to eat from Koreander, a local Korean BBQ spot, and maybe hitting up NYC to skate some street spots and grab drinks after.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
Shout out to Carissa, Jasper, Underground Skateshop, Dr. Joan Ball, Johnny Kalanga, Good Push, and our incredible team of skate instructors.