Sean Williams, the Prof. of Competitive Response, is a born and raised Brooklynite who fell in love with sneakers at the age of 13. By age 16, with a few years of work experience under his belt he began buying sneakers with his own money (no longer asking mom for the latest and freshest kicks). Having purchased thousands of pairs of sneakers over the years his love of sneakers has never completely died. It has simply transformed.
In 2007, OSD (Obsessive Sneaker Disorder) was founded by long time friend Dee Wells and Sean was asked to become a part of the historical movement. As business partner in OSD, LLC Sean’s love of sneakers has transformed into a mission for the company that has 3 words “Appreciate, Educate, Elevate”. These days, those 3 words are a part of everything Sean does in regard to the world of sneakers. He has accepted the personal mission of making sure that the younger generations know the potential that exists for them in the athletic footwear business as not only consumers, but as the future professionals in the industry.
Sean has been featured in various noteworthy TV shows, publications and web sites such as NBC’s “The Today Show”, Maxim magazine, Slate.com, and Sneaker Freaker just to name a few. In 2012, Sean and his partner Dee made the list of “50 Most Influential People in Sneakers Right Now”
published by Complex magazine. Sean also teaches OSD’s “SOLEcial Studies” which is an education program that prepares people all over the world for potential jobs and their businesses in the athletic footwear business. He has plans to begin teaching the program in partnership with sports teams and school across the United States.
*Bonus* – Big Baller Brand
Like most things, I became slightly obsessed with LaVar Ball and his company Big Baller Brand despite every instinct in my body telling me otherwise. LaVar started the company to promote his basketball playing sons, the eldest of which (Lonzo) is a top NBA prospect this draft. He caught a lot of flack in the media lately for his incredibly arrogant belief that his sons are a billion dollar brand, despite the fact that none of them have played a second of game time at the professional level. In line with this arrogance, LaVar has released their first shoe, the ZO2, which is of his son’s design. The price tag: a whopping 495 dollars.
In order to analyze this fully, I needed the help of FN’s resident Shoe Expert, and recovering Sneakerhead Sean “Paperchasr” Williams of OSD Live. We discussed current trends in the world of sneakers, but then got into the the nitty gritty such as LaVar’s parallels with a carnival barker, the similarities between the ZO2 and several other popular shoe designs, and the fact that these shockingly expensive shoes don’t even exist yet! I also give my 20 year prediction on the world of sneakers. I like to play the long game.