Rusty Ortiz: From Allen Edmonds to QG, Two Great Experiences


My name is Rusty Ortiz.  For the past 23 years, I have lived and breathed Allen Edmonds. My career with the Great American Shoe Company, covered several different positions and allowed me to live in some great cities; New York, Chicago, and recently Washington DC. People would always ask what kept me loyal to Allen Edmonds over the years.

Simple answer: the quality of the product and the people I worked with. 

If you have never owned a pair of Allen Edmonds (AE), you must treat yourself. I am a traditionalist and recommend any of the leather sole dress shoes they offer. All made with European calfskin that is hand-burnished, cork foot bed that conforms to your feet, dense leather sole for longevity, and thankfully made in my exact size, 9 3E.  I still remained amazed whenever I walked through the factory and witnessed the team hand-crafting all those shoes (since 1922 in Wisconsin).

In my travels with Allen Edmonds, I was fortunate to meet Craig Martin, nine years ago. He approached me with this wonderful vision of a men’s lifestyle store, and wanted AE to be his footwear partner.

Now, a decade later, the QG has evolved into that vision he described and become a boutique department store offering services, curated retail and a social experience with it’s events and memberships. Over the years, the Allen Edmonds partnership has also grown. AE selected the QG to be it’s first shop-n-shop on our 5th floor men’s store and is now one of the largest dealers on the East Coast. I am proud of how we grew the AE brand; and give most of the credit to that vision and the buy in from our staff and you, our loyal clients and members.

Rusty Ortiz & Craig Martin
Rusty Ortiz & Craig Martin


I have recently made the transition from Allen Edmonds to QG and will be managing the day to day operations with the goal of executing our vision day in and day out. I see this store, for what it has to offer and it’s future potential, as the next big thing in independent retailing. Craig, our staff, and the QG clients and members, have been wonderful in welcoming me into the family.

Now people ask me, why the move to The QG: And the answer remains simple:  the quality of the product and the people.

If you are a current client, I would love to meet you and introduce myself. If you have yet to experience the QG, please allow me to show you what makes the QG unique and understand why I came aboard.

Today, Thursday, October 8th, I will be combining both of my great experiences and presenting the entire Allen Edmonds line on our 5th floor. Stop in and take advantage of my footwear expertise.

Best Regards,


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