Customer takes over Vermont glove making company
The last time we visited the Green Mountain Glove Company in 2006, Kurt Haupt Jr. Had taken over the business from his father, Kurt Senior.
Now, Sam Hooper, 24, owns this nearly 100-year-old business in Randolph.
"It certainly can be overwhelming at times, but I wouldn't trade this spot in for anything else," Hooper said.
Two years ago, the Brookfield native needed a good pair of work gloves. He decided to buy a pair from Green Mountain Glove.
Hooper said, "I've used these gloves every single day. They are the best."
For Hooper, being a customer just wasn't enough. He wanted to learn more about the business, asking Haupt for an apprenticeship in September of 2017.
"He came in. He was pretty upbeat, wanted to take a look around and we showed him around. He was pretty interested in what was going on, so we went on from there," Haupt said.
Haupt had been looking for someone to take over the business. A business started by Haupt's father, Richard in 1920.
Haupt said, "It took about 12 years for somebody to come in the door. So, we tied him up."
Although he handed over the reigns to Hooper last January, Haupt still works in the shop.
Kurt's daughter Heidi, the fourth generation of this family business, still works at the shop as well. She's the general manager.
"When you think about it, the marketing peice has been missing for a lot of years and we've managed to stick around just by word of mouth, so I think that speaks volumes for us as a business," Heidi Haupt said
Sam Hooper will bring a young, fresh perspective on how Green Mountain Glove should be marketed. But he's not willing to change what has made this company so successful for nearly 100 years.
Hooper said, "Some people are always coming in here and saying, ah you've got to automate, you've got to automate. It's like, no, we're in the human resources business. We want to have every single machine filled here and we want everyone to know how great these gloves are."
A family's legacy, left in the right hands.