CREATIVES: Entrepreneur to Watch Rusty Heery of Athens, GA

Jul 14 2015

by Cheri Leavy

RustyHeery photo cred Southern Distinction
Photo credit: Southern Distinction

Rusty Heery’s heritage of entrepreneurism began in the heart of downtown Athens when his father opened Heery’s Clothes Closet in 1959. Rusty carries on the tradition of providing great customer service and offering fashion forward brands.  He invests in a strong staff of people that equally understand the college town market and share his vision for the business.  Rusty recently renovated the brick and mortar and re-designed its e-commerce site so he moves with the times.

Rusty is a valued member of The Southern Coterie and a smart entrepreneur to befriend.  #connectcollaboratecreate

Look out for updates on Heery’s upcoming fall events such as a fashion show with TIBI designer and UGA graduate Amy Smilovic, football weekend events with other retailers and brands from around the South as well as a super fab blogger visit from Waiting on Martha.




Born 4-1-56 in Decatur, Georgia, Rusty moved to Athens in 1959 and he graduated from Athens Academy in 1974.  He graduated from Hampden Sydney College with a B.A. in Economics in 1978. Rusty worked for C&S Bank until August 1979. He worked at Heery’s from 1979 to present. Rusty and his wife Ginger have three children and one granddaughter.


Describe your brand/business and how it got started:

My father opened Heery’s in 1959 in half of the Heery’s Too building. We moved to our current location in the mid 1980s. Heery’s is an upscale ladies boutique offering an extensive selection of clothes, handbags, shoes and accessories.



We’re inspired by a strong desire of offer our customers a truly wonderful shopping experience with a commitment to the highest level of customer service.


#1 skill/attribute needed to be an entrepreneur:

Hard work and self discipline.


Role model and why:

My father. He built a great business from scratch, always treated people fairly and retired when he was still young.


Favorite social media and why:

Facebook. It keeps you in touch with so many people.

(Lindsay, his creative director and I say check out Heery’s fab instagram.)


Favorite quote or piece of advice:

Robert E. Lee’s father told him to always remember that to strangers you are the person you appear to be.


Interesting tidbit about you or your business:

When I started, I didn’t know a thing about the ladies clothing business. I watched in total amazement of ladies shopping habits.


Theme Song:


Fave book or author:

Lonesome Dove by Larry McMurtry



Golf, bird hunting


Favorite charity:

Hope Haven, YMCA


What you love most about Athens:

All of the energy

 Rusty, Lindsay and Linda

Rusty pictured with staffers Lindsay Lucas and Linda Rasch

195 College Avenue
Athens, Georgia 30601

Be sure to also check out his other endeavors:


The Southern Coterie is a social network ( with events ( that connects influencers, entrepreneurs and marketing professionals with an affinity for the South- the Makers and Doers.

Enjoy this series where we introduce you to Southern creatives we find inspiring-






Cheri Leavy View More Blog Posts from this Author

Cheri Leavy is a connector, cheerleader and marketing consultant for fellow entrepreneurs.
Building rapport and strengthening a sense of community:
• A community of female entrepreneurs through the The Southern Coterie and The Southern C Summit
• The faces and places of Athens that make our city so vibrant through guide2athens
• A community of devoted football fans through Bulldawg Illustrated
- Contributing editor to Coastal Illustrated, Executive Board Member of the UGA Alumni Association

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