Dr. Scholl’s Inc. is one of the largest manufacturers of over-the-counter insoles, orthotics, pads and other foot care products. Dr. Scholl’s merchandise is carried in many large retailers across the United States as well as online. You’ve probably come across their merchandise in your local drug store, and you may even own a few of their products. But, have you ever wondered: Who is Dr. Scholl? Is there really a face behind the name? Was he an actual doctor? We know that we have, so let’s find out!
William Mathias Scholl was born in La Porte, Indiana in 1882. He grew up in rural Indiana where his father was a cobbler and his mother took care of the thirteen children. He began his love of podiatry as a teenager, when he took a job at a local shoe store that specialized in footwear. Witnessing the foot problems of some of his customers inspired him to apply to medical school. He attended The University of Illinois College of Medicine, where received his M.D. degree in 1904.
After graduating medical school he began his own company, Dr. Scholl Inc. Using his combined expertise of footwear and medicine, he developed over 1,000 foot care products throughout his lifetime. He was an innovator and took foot care to a level previously unmatched.
He was not only a successful business man; he also founded the Dr. Scholl Foundation, a private independent grant-making foundation for charitable purposes, and established the Illinois College of Chiropody and Orthopedics (now the William M. Scholl College of Podiatric Medicine). Dr. Scholl passed away in 1968, leaving the business to his two nephews. In the years since his passing the business has grown substantially and continues to create new foot care products.
Dr. Scholl truly dedicated his life to making people’s feet more comfortable and healthier. So, next time you purchase a Dr. Scholl’s foot product, you now know who to thank for that wonderful product!