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20 posts categorized "Corrections"

January 20, 2013

Rochester man steps up with new shoe company

Here's some from a piece I wrote about an interesting project based here in Rochester. A designer is launching his own men's shoe company from a northwest Rochester townhouse.

And he is forgoing China or any other international manufacturing. And all of the source materials - leather, shoelacers and whatnot - originate in the U.S.

One last note, his fiancee's name is Krisa Ryan. I mucked up the spelling in print. Sorry about that.

Jorge Gomez wants people to try walking in his shoes. Literally.

In a small southwest Rochester townhouse that he shares with his fiancée, Gomez's new men's shoe company — Well Bred — is taking its first steps.

And he's following a path that's rare these days. The young designer's creations are being made solely in this country, using only materials from the U.S.

50fa4452d4462.image"I wanted to make a product made in the U.S. that I could be proud to wear," he says.

Gomez left a career designing cars to step into the world of shoes. But why shoes?

"They are the most functional piece of clothing in a person's wardrobe," Gomez says.

When he ended up at a New York shoe design firm, Gomez worked to learn all he could about making shoes. Part of that education included traveling through China to tour factories.

What he found was not pretty. "Very unhappy" workers making one particular stitch all day long as hundreds of thousands of shoes rolled by on a conveyor belt.

"I saw horrible, dirty conditions," he says.

That's what drove him to have his shoes crafted in the U.S., despite the higher cost. Designing his contemporary menswear in his Rochester home office was the easy part. The most difficult and time-consuming part of it all has been lining up a U.S. manufacturer.

Eventually, he found a factory in California with a dedicated team of artisans. Gomez found a source for American leather in Illinois. But finding U.S.-made shoelaces was a challenge, since only two firms still make them.

50fa4463c2de4.imageNow he has actual samples of five styles of shoes, his re-interpretations of classics like oxfords, wingtip brogues and everyday boots.

Gomez says his shoes are very versatile. His hope is that men can wear them when they need to look professional as well as at more casual, off-hours times. They will cost between $395 and $475, which puts him on the mid- to high end of the price ranges for these types of shoes. However, he says his shoes will last and are designed so they can easily be re-soled.

"I was frustrated by the selection of shoes in menswear. I would spend $300 on a pair of beautiful shoes, and they would fall apart within two weeks," Gomez says.

He's traveling to New York this week to show his shoes to potential retailers. The goal is to get around 15 high-end men's boutiques to make orders from the New York show and a Las Vegas event next month.

While the focus is on getting into stores, Well Bred will eventually sell shoes directly through its website. That means he'll need stock on hand in Rochester.

"We'll use the 'little warehouse,' aka the guest bedroom," he says with a chuckle.

Gomez says he probably wouldn't have made it this far without his fiancée, Krisa Ryan. She brought him to Rochester, when she got a job at Mayo Clinic. She was the one who came up with Well Bred as a name to embody a brand that comes from good circumstances.

"I've had my doubts, but she really supported me through it all," he says.

Now everything depends on the reactions of the retail buyers.

"I put everything I've got into it. I think it is a project that I can be proud of, no matter the outcome," Gomez says while looking at one of his shoes.

October 22, 2012

Old building gets facelift for spa biz

UPDATE - The print version of this piece was wrong on one point. Essence Skin Clinic is not moving. The Oddfellows space will be used to house a new sister business to be called Essence Med Spa.

I apologize for the error.



A high-profile downtown spot is getting a facelift as it prepares to put its best face forward for a new tenant.

622123_10151126017021359_2024214389_oWork is under way at 23 Second St. S.W. for an extensive remodel to freshen up the space for Essence Med Spa. That is a spin-off from Essence Skin Clinic, which is based at 400 S. Broadway in the Riverside Building.

Owner Jennifer Sanneman  began the business in 1998. Essence offers services like permanent cosmetics, laser hair removal, chemical peels, tattoo removal, Botox and other skin-related treatments.

I should have more details on this project soon.

That space in the 131-year-old former Odd Fellows building at Second Street and First Avenue Southwest was last occupied by Think Mutual Bank. Think moved to the Minnesota Biobusiness Center building in July 2011.

Essence will share the Odd Fellows building with Eagle Drug Store, Newt's Express and HDR Architecture.

Baheya LLC of Rochester bought the building last year for $5.3 million from 23 Second Street SW LLC.

August 05, 2011

Mayo Clinic's new Broadway deal

This is an interesting deal, in my opinion anyway.

But first, I do want to thank the eagle-eyed editors at the Post-Bulletin for keeping my from looking sillier than I normally do in print.

Compass_Disk-04 Many of you know about my handicap of being born without any sense of direction. Left, right… up, down…east, west. It is all interchangable to me.

This morning I tried to move the entire downtown Mayo Clinic campus to the EAST side of Broadway. Whoops. It least I had Mayo Clinic located in the correct city. That's something, right? Heh.

Thanks to Local News Editor Mike Klein, that was fixed and Mayo now doesn't need to change all of its address labels. Thanks for having my back, Mike.


Mayo Clinic is planning to do something it has very rarely done in Rochester.

It's going to cross Broadway.

 Almost all of Mayo Clinic's downtown campus is on the west side of the main artery of Broadway/U.S. 63.

Now, Mother MaServeAttachmentyo has confirmed that it will stroll east across the crosswalk at Broadway and Historic Third to move into the City Centre commercial complex.

“Mayo Clinic plans to lease approximately 5,000 square feet of the second floor of the City Centre in downtown Rochester, but plans for the space have not been finalized,” says Mayo spokeswoman Kelley Luckstein.

Rochester developer Joe Weis built the complex, which is connected to the renovated former C.O. Brown building, in 2008.

Its anchor tenant, accounting and financial services firm RMS McGladrey, immediately moved into a large portion of the third floor.

In 2010, it took just 30 days to turn an empty shell with concrete walls and a sand floor into the sleek pool hall bar called Top Shots! on the street level.

That was followed by the Dittrich & Lawrence law firm moving onto the second floor.

A skyway connecting the building to the next-door hotel, now called Rochester City Centre Hotel, opened in late spring of this year.

And now Mayo Clinic is making plans to move into City Centre.

While details have not been worked out, officials expect the 5,000-square-feet of office space will likely be used for administrative support.

Is there a timeline for when Mayo Clinic might move into the space?

"No date has been identified, but could be as soon as this fall," says Mayo Clinic spokesman Bryan Anderson.

And it sounds as if there might be another tenant ready to fill out the forms and file the paperwork for space in Weis' City Centre.

I'll use all of my assets to assess the accuracy of this tip.

March 09, 2011

Western Digital's return and my correction

In my Tuesday column about Western Digital returning to Rochester by buying Hitachi Global Storage Technologies, I recounted some of Western Digital's history in Rochester.

And I also confused two facilities in northwest Rochester. Here's how I explain it and hopefully correct it in today's column.

Wrong building

I knew it was a big building that formerly belonged to a technology company that left Rochester and that Mayo Clinic took over.

4188392932_0574ce7b21_z-1 I just picked the wrong one.

In my column Tuesday, I made an error when reporting about Mayo Clinic taking over a complex built by, but never occupied by, Western Digital Corp.

The facility built by Western Digital at 4001 41st St. N.W. is now called the Mayo Support Center.

I was confused. I mixed it up with the nearby Superior Drive Support Center at 3050 Superior Drive N.W., which was a Celestica Inc. facility until that company left Rochester in 2003.

I apologize for the slip-up. Thanks to two Rochester real estate experts, Jim Miner and Shelli Wappes, who both sent me gentle notes to correct me.

July 12, 2010

The wrong George and REMJoy


This is becoming way too common an event.

Once again, I have to try to correct a screw-up in print with no other explanation other than, "I made a mistake."

In a item in today's print-version of Heard on the Street about REMJoy Medical Supply, I mention the name of the commercial Realtor who handled the deal that put the business into the Corporate Gardens offices on Second Street Southwest.

The first name is George, but I muffed the last name.

George Rownd of Braasch Commerical Real Estate handled the deal.

Instead of Rownd, I wrote the name of another Rochester commercial Realtor named George with three consonants at the end of the last name.

Sorry about that, George Bayrd.

And George Rownd, I apologize for giving credit for one of your deals to someone else.

Here's piece from the column with the name corrected:

Saida Omar used to do sleep research, but now she is focusing on her own dream and is opening two very awake businesses in southwest Rochester.

Omar is launching a medical supply operation focusing on home health care as well as a specialty transportation service for people with special needs going to doctor appointments, home from the hospital or elsewhere.

In a nod to her previous vocation, she has named her new businesses — REMJoy Medical Supply and REMJoy Special Transportation Services. REM, of course, stands for rapid eye movements seen when people asleep dream.

While she is experienced in the medical field, starting businesses is a new endeavor for Omar.

"I'm starting completely from scratch," she said.

She hopes to open both businesses later this month in Suite 200 at 2215 Second St. S.W. in the Corporate Gardens Plaza.

George Rownd of Braasch Commercial Real Estate handled the leasing deal.

January 11, 2010

Mea culpa - my last mistake of 2009

PICS OF BOOM TRUCK 006 You’d think after living here and writing about the area for more than 10 years, I’d be able to keep the names of cities straight.

But you’d be wrong, if you thought that.

Case in point, I mixed-up Kenyon for Kasson in my Dec. 31 column.

The Kenyon Lumber Mart, also known as KLM, closed Nov. 24 and is for sale.

Meanwhile, the Kasson Arrow Building Center is open, is renovating its showroom and is adding cabinets to its offerings.Prior to becoming an Arrow Building Center,  the Kasson business was known as a lumber mart.

Hence, my goof-up not only was wrong, but it confused people who still think of the Kasson center by its pre-2002 name.

The K with a closed lumber yard is Kenyon. The K with an open lumber yard is Kasson.

I’m sorry for the error. Luckily it was still in 2009, so 2010 is error-free … for the moment, at least.

December 03, 2009

REMINDER - AM Espresso @ Home Fed's Superior Dr. branch

080508homefederalbanknwjk One last reminder, since I mucked up the calendar listing in the paper earlier this week and could have confused people.

The Rochester Area Chamber's AM Espresso networking event in the morning is happening at Home Federal Bank's Superior Drive branch next to C.O. Brown and near Westfire Grille.

• A.M. Espresso, a morning business networking event, is scheduled from 7:30 a.m. to 9 a.m. at Home Federal Bank, 2048 Superior Drive N.W., next to C.O. Brown. It is sponsored by Rochester Area Chamber of Commerce. For more information, call the chamber at 288-1122 or by e-mail to

Home Federal is the host and expect Perkins restaurants to cater it with muffins and coffee.I hope to be there. And I hope everyone gets to the right plac.

Sorry for the confusion.

A.M. Espresso is @ Home Fed. Bank on SUPERIOR DRIVE N.W.

Whoops. I have been listing the location of tomorrow's A.M. Espresso incorrectly in the business calendar.

080508homefederalbanknwjk It is being hosted at Home Federal Bank. I just listed the wrong one. It is NOT at Civic Center.

The event in the morning is at the newish Superior Drive Northwest branch by C.O. Brown.

Here's the listing with the correct details:

• A.M. Espresso, a morning business networking event, is scheduled from 7:30 a.m. to 9 a.m. at Home Federal Bank, 2048 Superior Drive N.W., next to C.O. Brown.

It is sponsored by Rochester Area Chamber of Commerce. For more information, call the chamber at 288-1122 or by e-mail to

May 13, 2008

Morrie's Mazda gears up

It has been parked in the back lot for a while, but the now a Morrie's Mazda dealership is ready to roll in Rochester, says Morrie's COO Karl Schmidt.
Mazda_logoApplications for building permits to expand the building at 3800 West River Parkway N.W. should go to the city in the next week or 10 days, Schmidt says.

This will be built in where Quality Auto Sales was at the the intersection of 37th Street West River Parkway.

I'll have more on this later.

May 05, 2008

Roch. Biz After Hours = Thursday

The notice has gone out. There's a glitch in the latest Rochester Area Chamber of Commerce newsletter.

A typo might confuse people, so an e-mail has gone out to remind people that the May 8 BAH is on Thursday.

By sheer good luck, the Post-Bulletin has it correct in print.

However, the chamber has many, many calendar typos to go to catch up to the piles of errors I've made in the last few years. Though I do challenge them to try. Heh.

Thursday • Business After Hours, a networking event for local businesses, is scheduled from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. at Rochester Toyota, 4365 Canal Place S.E. The Rochester Area Chamber of Commerce sponsors this event.