Stephen Colbert, the host of The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, can add a personalized pair of Nikes to his shoe collection. Phil Knight, the co-founder and chairman of the footwear and apparel giant, made an appearance on the show which aired on April 29.
Knight presented Colbert with a custom pair of Nike Presto iDs, a popular footwear choice among runners and collectors. The shoe features the South Carolina flag, Colbert’s home state, and imagery from his previous shows on television.
“Basically we wanted to give you something no one else could give you,” Knight said during the show.
Knight describes how Nike, now the world’s most valuable brand among sport businesses, had humble beginnings at the University of Oregon in Eugene– a location which is now considered one of the most popular spots for distance running in North America.
Bill Bowerman, head coach of the Ducks at the time, often experimented with footwear and co-founded the company with Knight. Bowerman, in addition to his role with Nike, is popularly known as being the coach of U.S. running great Steve Prefontaine.
The artist who designed the brand’s iconic swoosh was paid two dollars per hour while at Portland State University and was gifted 500 shares of the company as compensation. Those shares are worth approximately U.S.$1 million today. The shoe’s sole is notable because it resembled a waffle design.
Knight released his memoir, entitled Shoe Dog, on April 26, 2016. The book is about the early days of Nike, which is headquartered in Beaverton, Ore.