As I continue my monthly interviews with industry sneaker creators and professionals, this week, I'm excited to share my conversation with Columbia Records A&R executive Mont Brown. The Philly native grew up with an innate passion for humanitarianism and music, which led him to found Community Service (CS), a clothing brand focused on delivering affordable and stylish options to underserved communities. For this installment of “Kickin' Facts,” we spoke about his unique take on fashion, the inspiration behind CS' first sneaker (the 5418 Runner), what it's really like being a music executive and fashion designer, and much more. Peep the exclusive chat with Brown below.

Tell fans about your brand, Community Service.

Community service in general is dear to my heart. I feel like before you get served, you have to be of service, so giving back to my community and being a humanitarian is something I've been doing since 2010. I started way before that but officially, I started giving back to my city, Philadelphia, in 2010. I have a big heart and I get that from my family -- we're a family of givers naturally. I started the Community Service clothing brand in 2017, and then I stopped once I got into my A&R position. Last year, I -- along with my partners Trishonna and Kion -- decided to bring it back out.

How did you come up with the 5418 Runner, your first sneaker?

I'm from Southwest Philly and the block I'm from is 54th Street. The “18” comes from my partner Kion, who's from North Philly, the 1800 block called Trap Street. So, we put it together to symbolize the unity of both neighborhoods coming together.

What was the inspiration behind the design and look of the sneaker?

I was always a fan of runners as a kid because my mom and grandma always used to wear runners back in the day. I also have a foot injury that I was born with, so I just wanted the most comfortable sneaker possible. I saw a lot of people doing Jordan 1s and silhouettes like that, so I wanted to stay away from that. I knew no one did the runners, so it was perfect for me to do it.

What is the message behind the Community Service (CS) logo?

Every drop that we do has a theme to it, so the CS logo is community service, but it really stands for “No more fires.” That was the message behind it and when we have another drop, it will be a different concept. It's all about being a humanitarian and spreading awareness.

How do you pick colors for the sneakers?

It depends because I kind of go off the seasons, like if Spring is coming, I'll do a bright color. But for me, I have to feel it. I have to see the color and envision myself wearing it.

Has fashion influenced the way you design?

Fashion and music saved my life. They're like mom and dad to me. I just love it, whether it's the 1930s or 1940s, the different periods inspire me, and it depends on how I feel. The way my father and his friends used to dress back in the day with nice slacks, tailored shirts, and hard bottoms is the vibe I like. How I dress is like that or vintage pieces, or I'll make it myself.

How do you manage your life as an A&R executive alongside being a designer?

I love both, so it comes easy for me. It's not necessarily about managing the two. It's just about being creative, and I think as people we should never stop creating. I don't have other hobbies -- it's not like I play basketball. This is my dream, my goals are this, my everything is this, so if I'm not doing music, I'm doing something creative with fashion.

Would you say being an executive has inspired you as a designer?

For sure, especially with traveling and being in the building with other executives. Seeing their culture, learning about their upbringing, and seeing how they dress helps my creativity process.

How do you see Community Service growing?

I want it to grow and be affordable to urban communities. I want affordable high-end clothing. For the high-end stuff, I'll do one-off pieces or special releases, but it's important to me and our brand that low-income communities have the opportunity to be stylish as well.

Do you have any upcoming drops you want to highlight?

Yes, the Tiffany 5418 and the Salt & Pepper 5418 runners. Shout out to my partners Kion and Trishonna; they help bring the vision to life, and we're going to continue to serve the community this fly s**t.

I respect that. Lastly, do you have any advice for anyone wanting to get into the music and/or sneaker industries?

Understand what you want from the industry because we're in the real thing. Get in here and get a real position. Once you put things in perspective and realize we're only here for a minuscule amount of time, everything becomes crystal clear. A lot of people play with their life like we get a do-over, but I can't do that.

The Community Service 5418 Runner in grey/orange and apparel are available now at