Michigan Industrial Shoe is a family owned and operated company established by Victor Girolami in 1961.
Back in 1952, Vic was a sales rep for a new brand of safety shoes called Hy-Test. After several sucessful years selling the safety shoes directly to industrial plant shoe stores, Vic needed a distributor with a mobile shoe truck. Vic soon found he was not able to find a distributor with his passion and committment to the safety shoe industry.
Thus Michigan Industrial Shoe (MIS) was founded in 1961 with one shoemobile on the road and the family's garage as a warehouse. When the garage was full of shoes and unable to park a bike—let alone a car—the shoes began migrating into the family's home. When this happened, Gale Girolami put her FOOT down and said, "Get these shoes out of my house and get a warehouse!"
Here's a timeline of events that follow:
- 1968 - Vic rents first 3000 sq. foot warehouse on 8 Mile Road in Southfield.
- 1969 - Gale Girolami offically starts working for Michigan Industrial Shoe. She made sure the bookkeeping was done properly.
- 1970 - MIS adds a second shoemobile.
- 1974 - MIS moves to a larger building with a heated warehouse. Wow, heat!
- 1975 - MIS adds a third shoemobile.
- 1976 - Gale and Vic buy a 16,000 sq. foot warehouse on 8 Mile Road in Redford, our current home.
- 1977 - Gale and Vic's oldest son, Tom Girolami, joins the business.
- 1980 - MIS adds six in-plant stores.
- 1983 - MIS buys another Hy-Test distributor in Akron, OH. This adds three additional shoemobiles and Great Lakes Industrial Shoe (GLIS) is born!
- 1984 - Tom becomes a partner in Great Lakes Industrial Shoe and moves to Akron to run the business.
- 1985 - Gale and Vic's youngest daughter, Linda Girolami Petty, joins MIS as office manager.
- 1986 - MIS starts a partnership with Hi-Tech Optical to open an in-plant store with saftey shoes and safety eye glasses all in one convenient store.
- 1987 - Gale and Vic's youngest son, Michael Girolami, joins MIS as an outside sales representative.
- 1995 - Mike Girolami and Linda Girolami Petty are made partners by Gale and Vic (who in turn run—not walk—all the way to Florida for their first two week vacation)!
- 1996 - Gale and Vic sell the remainder of GLIS to Tom. They forgot to do that in 1995 when they were hurrying to pack for Florida.
- 1997 - Gale and Vic sell the remainder of MIS and the 8 Mile building to Mike and Linda.
- 1998 - MIS adds a full line of high quality jackets and coats from Carhartt.
- 2000 - MIS starts selling footwear on the web at www.Hytest.com.
- 2002 - MIS adds two more shoemobiles for a total of seven!
- 2004 - MIS expands its retail store within the 8 Mile warehouse.
- 2005 - Mike's wife, Lisa Girolami, joins the business as marketing and web development manager.
- 2006 - New website, Michiganshoe.com, goes live.
- 2007 - New retail store opens in Battle Creek Michigan
- 2008 - Work Clothing expanded and offered on new web site, www.WorkWear1.com
- 2010 - Michiganshoe.com expands further into the safety market by offering flame resistant and high visibility clothing by some of the best manufacturers like Wolverine Hi Vis, Carhartt FR, Carhartt Hi Vis and Bulwark FR. We have expert staff to help you find the appropriate safety clothing for your workplace.
- 2011 - Michigan Industrial Shoe celebrates it's 50th anniversary!
- 2012 - Victor Girolami, founder of Michigan Industrial Shoe, sadly passes away on February 24, 2012. We will miss you, Vic!
- 2013 - 2013 is a record breaking sales year for Michigan Industrial Shoe!
- 2014 - Tom Girolami moves on to other interests and Michigan Industrial Shoe acquires Great Lakes Industrial Shoe. Good luck, Tom!
- 2015 - MIS builds a 26 foot Shoe Mobile to serve the growing demand from local plants with high quality Safety Footwear.
- 2016 - MIS celebrates 55 years of "Keeping People Happy and Safe At Work". Thanks Gale and Vic!
Today, Michigan Industrial Shoe has an entire block warehouse on Eight Mile in Redford, Michigan. We have the footwear and work clothing you need to keep you protected in everyday work and living.