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Shinola finds way to honor frontline workers amid COVID-19 pandemic

Watch meant to honor Olympic athletes now to honor healthcare workers

DETROIT – Shinola was set to unveil new watches honoring athletes headed to the 2020 Olympics, but that changed when the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic hit.

The games were postponed so Shinola shifted gears and found a way to honor frontline workers instead.

The watch is “a beautiful crane combined with stainless steel with a vertical stripe dial that celebrates the Olympics rings,” Shinola CEO and President Shannon Washburn said.

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When they learned that the Olympics would be postponed, the direction of their project shifted. They decided to designate the Olympic watch to go toward healthcare workers in the Metro Detroit area.

“When that happened and we were talking about the champ and you know, OK, we’ll get this project and it will just hold it and then I can’t even remember who in the meeting said, ‘Oh my gosh. The champs are here,'” Washburn said.

All proceeds from the champ will go to the Community Foundation for Southeast Michigan -- specifically to their efforts supporting healthcare workers.

“We will be beginning to work on this watch within the next couple of weeks as we safely bring our team to manufacturing at our headquarters -- and I would anticipate a mid-July delivery when the watches have been completely assembled,” Washburn said.

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