The Rutherford Report: Millennial Entrepreneur Brings Love to IE

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“The single most powerful element of youth is our inability to know what's impossible.”

—Adam Braun
Millennial Entrepreneur Brings Love to IE

When Justin Hudson and his business partner, Mike Wogu, were in France working on their leather travel gear business (a venture he described as James Bond meets Louis Vuitton), people always asked him where he was from.

At first, he’d tell them he grew up in Riverside, California, but it only prompted blank looks.

Eventually, he resorted to saying he was from the Los Angeles area.

“It just makes it easier,” the 30-year-old Rancho Cucamonga resident said. “But I was always thinking, ‘Why am I saying LA when I grew up in the Inland Empire?’”

Back home, Justin started working on his next business venture—a clothing brand celebrating the Inland Empire.

“I wanted to create something that had love and IE all in one,” he said. “After drawing for hours and hours, it came to me.”

The company’s signature logo is a heart with a dot at the bottom and a cursive, lowercase “e” coming out of it. He also created other designs featuring the two-letter acronym for the region.

“It’s about spreading peace, love and unity,” he said.

He started the 1 Love IE online store in December 2012 to sell hats with the logo, and he caught a big break when two of his old friends (Denver Broncos Safety Omar Bolden and Seattle Seahawks Linebacker Bobby Wagner) ended up playing against each other in the 2013 Super Bowl. He’d given the friends hats, and they donned them at the game.

After that, business was brisk.

“This whole experience over the past five years has been humbling and overwhelming at times,” he said.

The first retail break came when someone from the Hat Club at the Ontario Mills Mall contacted Justin after seeing his products on Instagram. 1 Love IE’s Instagram page has more than 10,000 followers and hundreds of photos of people sporting the company’s gear.

In the meantime, Justin expanded his product line to include t-shirts, hoodies, key chains, coffee mugs, and other offerings.

Eventually, he decided to open his own shop.

“I wanted to protect the brand and grow the organization,” he said.

He opened 1 Love IE at Victoria Gardens in Rancho Cucamonga in April 2017.

Justin said he chose the open-air shopping center because it is one of the region’s most unique and inviting venues.

“We need to take pride and ownership of our community, and I think Victoria Gardens helps us do that,” he said.

Some have chuckled at the idea of basing a clothing brand on the Inland Empire, but Justin hasn’t let any naysayers get in his way.

Another business opportunity is in the wings, Justin said, declining to give details. But he hopes the deal will help the 1 Love IE brand take flight even more than it already has.

Learn more about this Second District business by visiting
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