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Hendrick Boards

Published: July 27, 2012 Updated: July 31, 2012 1:02 p.m.
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Saving animals, one T-shirt at a time

Article Tab: home-brea-hold-respective

Hendrick Boards co- founders Donny Hendrickson, left, director of social media, and identical triplet brother David, CEO, were raised in an animal-loving home. Their mom once even brought a bobcat home. Their Brea business recently designed a “United by Animals” t-shirt in which 40 percent of proceeds will be donated to shelters and rescues in Colorado and Montana. They hold their rescue dogs Ziggy, 6, and William, 5, respectively. http://www.hendrickboards.com/


BREA — His mom once brought home a bobcat.

And if she hadn’t done that, nearly 20 years ago, David Hendrickson today might be the king of skate apparel.

Instead, while he’s a small-fish designer of skateboards, skate apparel and related accessories, he’s also a guy who sees himself involved in a bigger mission – saving animals.

Consider his life this summer.

Since mid-June, as fires ravaged Colorado and Montana, thousands of people have been forced to evacuate their homes. But their pets, often overlooked, were displaced too, many permanently. During this time Hendrickson – one of identical triplets who works in Brea with his brothers at the startup Hendrick Boards – has been taking calls from rescue workers hundreds of miles away. His company is known in the animal rescue world because it donates a consistent 20 percent of sales to connect people to their local shelters and rescues.

The calls to Hendrickson have relayed some harrowing tales. One Colorado rescue worker received only a five-minute warning before having to evacuate her home. As the fire came closer, and as her husband and children prepared to escape, the woman ran outside to unlock a pen holding 30 cattle and 20 horses. All she could do was hope they would outrun the fire.

Such stories are motivating Hendrickson.

Soon after the fires started, Hendrickson and his two brothers, Donny, director of social media, and Darren, director of nonprofit partnerships, brainstormed ways they could help. After two hours of sketching they created a shirt design and launched it the next day, with 40 percent of its proceeds going to shelters and rescues in Colorado and Montana. Thanks, in large part, to social media, they brought in $2,000 over the first weekend of July.

The shirt’s design speaks louder than the words alone. It reads “United by Animals” in neatly-outlined block letters. But the solid parts look rough, as if they’ve been scribbled in with ballpoint pen. “We wanted it to look organic and hand-sketched, as if someone literally wrote on the shirt,” Hendrickson says.

Every week, Hendrick Boards launches a shirt that donates 40 percent of proceeds toward a cause in a specific area. The Colorado and Montana fires were the cause for the first, second, and third weeks of July. At the end of the United by Animals campaign, the team will have raised more than $3,000 in donations for displaced animals in those areas.

That kind of generosity is what Hendrick Boards has been about since starting in mid-2011. The company has given money to more than 150 rescues, shelters, and sanctuaries across the United States. And they’re not species-centric. They partner with a grizzly bear sanctuary in Montana and a skunk rescue in South Carolina.

So how did a skateboarder who loves to paint get involved in animal rescue?

“My mom taught us how important it is to help animals,” says Hendrickson. “We always had a ton of pets running around the house.”

But regardless of his animal-friendly upbringing, he says some facts about animals in the United States are pretty motivating. Each year, about 4.5 million cats and dogs are euthanized by shelters; more than 10,000 a day, according to the Humane Society.

Still, Hendrickson cites one motivation, a kind of role model, really, above all others:

“William is still my number one inspiration.”

William is Hendrickson’s dog. He adopted the small, brown, mixed-breed three years ago out of an animal shelter. William was, and is, physically impaired as a result of poisoning. He was malnourished and some organs were compromised, rendering him dependent on special medication and treatments for the rest of his life.

“I had to drop out of school to pay for a sick dog,” Hendrickson says. Faced with $8,000 worth of pet bills and a mere $250 in his bank account, he “quit everything” to create Hendrick Boards and help save animals like William.

The company grew quickly, and by the end of last year Hendrickson realized that it had become too large for one person to manage. When it came to hiring staff, he reached out to people he knew he would see eye-to-eye with – his brothers. Donny and Darren have their own rescue dogs, Roxy and Ziggy, respectively, and grew up fighting for animal welfare alongside David.

“I am very close with my brothers, and they are just as passionate about animals,” says Hendrickson. “Who in your life can you trust more than your own siblings?”

Together, the Hendrickson triplets are non-discriminatory in rescuing animals. “Every animal deserves our fight and love just as much as dogs and cats,” says Hendrickson. “The undomesticated are just as important – monkeys, raccoons – every one deserves a loving home.”

Hendrick Boards donates thousands of dollars a month to save animals. The team designs together, converts the sketches into computer graphics, and sends the designs to printers where the merchandise is made. One of the first shirt designs, which would later inspire the Hendrick Boards logo and signature series, was taken from a painting Hendrickson made of William in silhouette. Hendrickson also hand paints every skateboard and longboard sold.

“A year ago, it was just me,” reflects Hendrickson. “But now I have a team behind me.”

They have plans to tap into the retail scene soon. And social media will continue to be instrumental in the company’s growth. With more than 17,000 fans on Facebook, the site has been invaluable in spreading awareness about Hendrick Boards and its cause.

So what’s Hendrickson’s next step, besides saving all the animals on the planet? ”

Going back and finishing college is a dream of mine,” he says.

“But I also like showing people that you don’t have to go to college to change the world.”

Contact the writer at kstorch@ocregister.com


for fun

Hendrick Boards- new tshirt

square it banner
Square It: LOVE animals
Square It: LOVE animals Square It: LOVE animals Square It: LOVE animals Square It: LOVE animals Square It: LOVE animals

Square It: LOVE animals

Product Code: SQ11125


The purchase of the “No Animal Without…” tee sparks a $10 donation to your local animal shelter, rescue or sanctuary. This is enough to feed a shelter animal for an entire month and help save animals.

Made from 100% cotton (women’s) and a cotton/poly blend (men’s), the “No Animal Without…” tee is available until August 7th only. Support local animal shelters, purchase the “No Animal Without…” tee and save an animal!


winter sunset in Maine

outside capital building Santa Fe, NM


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― Pema Chödrön


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love is always with you

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