Steve Madden: Steve Madden Steve Madden fell in love with the shoe business in the 1970's, when he sold platform shoes at a neighborhood store in Long Island, New York; that was in high school. About 15 years later, he struck out on his own, designing and selling shoes with a high-end look at affordable prices. As his business—and his ambitions—began to grow, he got involved in a securities fraud scheme and wound up serving two and-a-half years in prison. In 2005, he returned to Steve Madden, where he helped the company grow into a business valued at $3 billion. PLUS in our post-script "How You Built That," we check back with "kid-preneur" Gabrielle Goodwin and her mom Rozalynn who invented GaBBY Bows—double snap barrettes that don't slip out of your hair.
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Steve Madden: Steve Madden

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Steve Madden: Steve Madden

Steve Madden: Steve Madden

Steve Madden: Steve Madden

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Connor Heckert for NPR
Steve Madden is the founder of Steve Madden shoes.
Connor Heckert for NPR

Steve Madden fell in love with the shoe business in the 1970's, when he sold platform shoes at a neighborhood store in Long Island, New York; that was in high school.

About 15 years later, he struck out on his own, designing and selling shoes with a high-end look at affordable prices. As his business—and his ambitions—began to grow, he got involved in a securities fraud scheme and wound up serving two and-a-half years in prison.

In 2005, he returned to Steve Madden, where he helped the company grow into a business valued at $3 billion.

How You Built That: GaBBY Bows

We check back with "kid-preneur" Gabrielle Goodwin and her mom Rozalynn, who invented double snap plastic barrettes that don't slip out of your hair.

How You Built That: GaBBY Bows

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/789417322/789429170" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">