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Wow, this is all a bit surreal. It seems like only yesterday and also a lifetime ago that I set out to start a children's apparel business...with no children of my own, no experience in the apparel industry, but a stubbornness to prove to myself and the world that it was in fact possible to pursue my dream. I think back to the lessons I've taught my children over their lifetime...the things most worth having and accomplishing in this life are typically the things that require the greatest amount of effort. RuffleButts has certainly followed that rule. The amount of effort and heart I have invested into this business cannot really be put into words for me. It was my first born in many ways and I have invested my full heart and soul into growing it. The incredible people that joined me in that growth process will forever be a part of my life. RuffleButts would not have been possible without our talented, loyal, hard-working team and the most incredible customers a girl could ever wish for. Funny enough, the one word that has become the foundation of RuffleButts over the years is the same word I would use to sum up this almost 15-year journey for me, GRATITUDE.
Today is a monumental day for my own Schaub family and also our RuffleButts family. Today is the day I officially change my title from Founder & CEO to Founder & Chairman of the Board. I have been extremely blessed to have found a new CEO that shares my passion and vision for this company, our customers and the incredible team that makes it all happen. A CEO that vows to uphold our foundation of Gratitude and Golden Rule way-of-business, while showering our customers with love, appreciation and compliments for their little ones. The company will move forward, stewarded by our talented leadership team, striving continued improvements for all involved. I will continue to be a part of the business and the RB family, just in a new capacity. I will forever be the Founder, a friend and most passionate cheerleader ever.
I would be completely remiss to exclude my family from this post. They are my heart, my world and inspiration in so many ways. They are also a very large part of this decision. While Mark started as my husband and partner, with RuffleButts, it brought entirely new meaning to the word "partnership". People ask me all of the time what it's like to work with my husband and the honest answer is it's pretty much what you would imagine. Funny enough, we celebrated our 17th wedding anniversary just days before this announcement. I am so extremely proud that we have navigated this journey together and all that we've accomplished. Our opinions are often different, our work styles are most definitely different, but our principles and vision have been united all along. Mark gave up his career 3 years into my RuffleButts journey to join me in pursuing this dream and for that, I will be forever grateful. Our two beautiful children were born into this craziness and have participated in enough photo shoots to last them a lifetime. They have packed orders, swept warehouse floors, restocked inventory for countless hours and endured what has likely felt to them, like 12 years of unending fit tests. They have been understanding when mom had to be at work during school parties, field trips and events. They have supported me when spending countless hours in my office instead of hanging out with them. I have done my best attempt at the balancing act so many of us working moms do and they have never burdened me with guilt when I failed. They cheer me on and fill me with love. They are my joy, my heart, my proudest achievement and to them, I owe everything.
Today, as I update my title, it comes with such peace, faith, love and an immeasurable amount of gratitude to everyone who has supported and cheered for this journey along the way. Our customers...oh my goodness, we truly have the very best!! I am 100% aware that without you, none of it would be possible. With that, I trust that you are in great hands and I will continue my commitment to deliver an awesome shopping experience as we continue to grow. To the team that made this journey possible, you are AMAZING and I can't wait to watch the continued adventure. We turned this little dream into something pretty awesome and there is still so much ahead. We have been, and to a great extent still are, the little guy, coming from behind, but with kindness, loyalty, appreciation and a whole lot of determination, we are doing it! I look forward to chapter two of the RuffleButts' adventure from a different viewpoint, but forever and always through a lens of gratitude.
Founder & Chairman of the Board