Feature Articles


Nashville’s Most Admired CEOs of 2014: Mark Cleveland, Swiftwick

Please describe three of your top accomplishments in your role as CEO. The successful sale of the Hobby Lobby brand name to Hobby Lobby Stores and the reinvention and rebranding of my 50-year-old business to become Hobby Express. At Swiftwick, it’s the invention of a new class of liner socks to help amputees maintain or gain on their goals for an active lifestyle. The invention and patenting of a new moisture management strategy and cut-resistant hockey sock technology, knowing they save youth and professional hockey players from injury.Read full feature…

How Hobby Lobby International Resolved Its Trademark Dispute

“My company’s brand name pre-existed the Goliath and had trademark protection. At the time, we were operating in separate spaces, and our business was very Internet-driven while theirs was bricks and mortar. The two companies had managed to coexist, but as social media became more prominent it really started to confuse matters. And then there was a high-profile lawsuit — that’s when their brand really began to eclipse mine.” Read full feature…

State program helps Swiftwick score Canadian distribution deal

“Canadians have been buying Swiftwick socks online for years, so we could see the opportunity, but international expansion required a goal,’ Swiftwick co-founder and CEO Mark Cleveland said.” Read full feature…

How Could Hobby Lobby Int. Avoid Confusion With Hobby Lobby Stores?

“Going into the deal, Mr. Cleveland knew that Hobby Lobby International was frequently confused with Hobby Lobby Stores, a craft and art supply chain with more than 600 locations.” Read full feature…

Swiftwick founder tells Rotary importance of helping others

“A Rotarian for 28 years, Cleveland has started companies involved in maritime and trucking transportation, satellite communications and radio-controlled model aircraft. But he’s most well known as the CEO of Swiftwick, a Brentwood-based company that makes compression athletic socks. He founded the company in 2008.” Read full feature…

You Don’t Need Black Friday Specials When Customers Get Inked To Promote Your Brand

“What mattered to Cleveland is protecting the vision on which the company’s culture is based. “Culture is the most difficult thing to build and the easiest to tear down. It takes years to acquire and you can lose it in 10 seconds,” says Cleveland. Protecting the culture becomes the culture.” Read full feature…

Reimagining Socks: An Entrepreneur’s Tale

“Mark A. Cleveland is a serious serial entrepreneur. His handful of companies are more the product of his own desire to cultivate challenging enterprises than an expression of his passion for a particular industry.” Read full feature…

Driving Health: New Swiftwick Product Targets Driver Market

“Because of his affinity for and previous leadership roles in the trucking industry, it’s no wonder his current mission is dedicated to bringing the healing properties of compression socks to American truckers.” Read full feature…

Swiftwick compression sock to be sold in Pilot Flying J truck stops

“A compression sock ought to be a part of the uniform of every single fleet.” –Swiftwick CEO Mark Cleveland on the long-term health benefits of compression socks. He commended Pilot Flying J for “recognizing it as a driver health initiative.” Read full feature…