HINDsight 2020 – Celebrating Greg Hind’s Contribution to Community and Business World

As we look to wrap up the year of 2020, we choose to be thankful and give gratitude toward our founder who laid the groundwork for the work we get to do at GH Sports today. We celebrate Greg’s contributions to the Community and Business World.Highlighted below are three different ways that Greg put focus toward making an impact on people and community. It helps us reflect on the type of legacy we can choose to leave today, and tomorrow.


#1 HIND’s Mission Statement

To add/build value through our actions


Hind develops, manufactures and distributes product and

services that all of its customers are proud to be associated with.


Service -Treat customers, visitors and suppliers in a way that makes them want to come back.

Quality -Answer all needs -both expected and unexpected.

Environmental -Utilize all resources wisely.

Safety -There is no compromise.


Performance -An honest appraisal that nothing more could have been done.

Innovation -Taking what is and making what isn’t.



#2 US Small Business Award

In 1989, Greg Hind was named California and Western Region Entrepreneur of the Year and highlighted in U.S. Small Business Week Magazine.


Gregory William Hind, Pres./Owner Hind, Inc.

San Luis Obispo, California


Greg Hind broke an eardrum playing water polo in the Pan American Games of 1968. Out of his need for protection, Hind, Inc., (then Hind) was born in 1972 to manufacture the first ear guards for the water sport. This was only the beginning. A track runner friend approached him, wondering if there might be better attire for jogging than baggy sweatpants. Hind then designed the first nylon Sport­ tights — form-fitting shorts that have become a standard for runners and other athletes around the world. Hind’s sleek, brightly-colored sport apparel can be seen on swimmers, joggers, skiers, crew rowers, and others. The busi­ness has grown to 420 employ­ees in three manufacturing plants, and it grosses $31 million annually. Cited as Apparel Manufacturer of the Year by Sporting Goods Business magazine in 1988, Hind is a leading sporting goods apparel designer, manufacturer, and marketer.



#3 Cal Poly Fall 2011 Commencement 

In 2010, our Founder Greg Hind received the San Luis Obispo Chamber of Commerce’s Citizen of the Year Award. Cal Poly President Jeff Armstrong was in attendance and heard Greg speak, which led him to ask Greg to lead the 2011 Cal Poly Commencement Speech for the College of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Sciences and College of Science and Mathematics.


“You have achieved a great success which is celebrated today.”
Commencement Speech by Greg Hind, Cal Poly Fall 2011 Commencement – Mott Gymnasium, 4:00pm December 10, 2011
College of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Sciences and College of Science and Mathematics


“I would like to congratulate the Class of 2011.

You have achieved a great success which is celebrated today. You have overcome many challenges, dealt with problems, handled defeat and succeeded. Now – take that success forward and repeat it.

I would also like to welcome your support group: family, friends, faculty and administration. To understand what success truly means, one must always recognize those who helped you reach it.

Success is something you share and failure is something you bear. Don’t reverse them.

I too looked forward to this day, maybe not in the same way as you, but to be a part of an exciting beginning. To witness your initial step forward and to see the many voices that one day will be heard.

It’s fitting that we hold today’s proceedings in a gym – for many an encounter has been fought here with unpredictable outcomes. Much like what now awaits you, but whatever the future outcome is you have already shown the importance of loyalty to team and school, with dedication and commitment to your goals. Take that loyalty forward and repeat it.

I am a Cal Poly graduate. I was able to earn a Master’s degree at Cal Poly while I taught classes. I coached the water polo and swimming team under a grant assistant-ship program. This was a “learn by doing” experience in the true Cal Poly tradition.

This is a concept that has followed me throughout my career. It has given me the willingness to take on new endeavors, to learn from mistakes and make difficult changes.

Take that tradition forward and repeat it.

I shared an office with Coaches Dick Anderson and Sheldon Harden. After about 8 months I was sitting across from Sheldon when he leaned back and put his feet up on the desk. He started talking about that historic day in 1960 in Toledo, Ohio. He was aboard that flight with the Cal Poly football and cross country teams. He talked about the tremendous acts of courage and heroism. Students who were suddenly called upon to perform and how they rose to the occasion. I realized that throughout our life we will be faced with difficulties not of our choice, but how we respond is our choice. Whether faced with harrowing adversities, embarking on new careers or just day-to-day personal battles, it will be your choice as to how you will respond. You have already been called upon during your time at Cal Poly to make choices and you have answered. Take that willingness forward and repeat it.

When I was young I wanted to join the circus and later on I wanted to teach, so I went into business and accomplished both.

My years in business provided me with many challenges. You quickly learn how to deal with them and how not to have them control you. You develop a perspective that allows insight. You establish values that govern action. You set standards that direct decisions.

When I hired my first employee I had to accept that I could no longer do everything myself. I had to depend on others. From that point forward I set priorities accordingly. I understood that in order to have success we all had to achieve it together.

From the time I hired that first employee 40 years have passed. I know that sounds like eternity to you but to me it was only a few problems ago. What will you say? How will you look back on your career? If you let passion drive your endeavors and enthusiasm consume the years, then when you do look back it will be on your terms.

You are about to take an unproven step upon unknown terrain. Always remember the fortitude that compelled you the first time to take that step we celebrate today .

Often we take the first unsure step and spend a lifetime protecting it. Commitment must be continuously renewed by trial and re-confirmed by action. For the more steps we take the more we learn to walk among uncertainty. Take that commitment forward and repeat it.

I would like to share what some of my steps have taught me.

Criticism – listen to it – for no one is 100% right or 100% wrong. It’s up to you to decide to what degree the criticism is valid. Let honesty guide you.

Advice – don’t seek advice simply by what you want to hear, but rather by what you haven’t tried. Advice can be the first step to a journey otherwise not taken and when completed one you can call your own.

Making decisions – the right decision will always be the most inconvenient choice. If it’s convenient, it is only a way out and will not be a lasting solution. Take the choice of most resistance, for resolution is built on effort, not ease.

Ideas – remember, mere possession of any idea has little value if the willingness to follow through isn’t there.

Purpose – always develop the will, not the act-for action bears the weight of doubt while resolve holds the conviction of success.

Excuses – only protect failure.

Success – It is not a road followed. It must be forged by you through your decisions, your efforts, your disappointments. That’s why we can only wish you success.

There is a fragility in success and a rigidness in failure. Let each be a teacher not a mentor. 

Conviction – always demand more of yourself than less of others. For conviction is trusting in yourself long enough to overcome your own fears.

Learning – It begins when an honest attempt has failed.

Learning is a balance.

If we learn everything from our successes we are too confident.

If we learn everything from our mistakes we are too cautious.

If we learn everything from others we are too vulnerable.

If we learn everything from books we are too naive.

It is what you take from each that shapes your life.

Philanthropy – It represents an enduring faith that mankind has in one another. The act is neither by legislative decree nor derived from guilt rather an honest hope that above all else we best serve one another by supporting each other.

From that moment listening to Sheldon Harden talk about those students who carried out tremendous acts of courage that day, I know each of us has the capacity to respond to unforeseen acts in heroic ways. Whether seen by others or known only to ourselves.

As we celebrate your graduation today and as we remove the last remaining obstacles and step aside for you to go out to face your options, to make your choices, to meet challenges with unpredictable outcomes, I trust that you will confront them armed with the Cal Poly experience and with the confidence that your family, friends and faculty have given you. Take that forward and repeat it.

My suggestion: Your actions should be built through integrity. Don’t surround them with authority. They must be exemplary and answer to others. They cannot go beyond reproach for they must earn respect rather than command attention.

My advice: Accept success only for what was, be humble for what is and work hard for what will be.

I thank you for the opportunity to speak on your day of commencement and as you embark upon your unknown journey I wish you success. Class of 2011 – make your voices heard.

It’s time to take your loyalties, your successes, your experiences, your willingness and your commitments forward and repeat them.”

~Greg Hind

Greg Hind ©12/1/2011


Additional HIND History is highlighted on our website here:

One Comment


Thank you for sharing Greg’s commencement address. It was very thoughtful and incisive and will resonate for future graduates.. It was a privilege to know Greg.


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