State Forty Eight aims to celebrate Arizona pride, community

Stephen Polando (left), Nicholas Polando and Michael Spangenberg founded State Forty Eight in 2013. (Alexa D'Angelo/Community Impact Newspaper)
Stephen Polando (left), Nicholas Polando and Michael Spangenberg founded State Forty Eight in 2013. (Alexa D'Angelo/Community Impact Newspaper)

Stephen Polando (left), Nicholas Polando and Michael Spangenberg founded State Forty Eight in 2013. (Alexa D'Angelo/Community Impact Newspaper)

Image description
(Alexa D'Angelo/Community Impact Newspaper)
Image description
(Alexa D'Angelo/Community Impact Newspaper)
When Michael Spangenberg, Stephen Polando and Nicholas Polando started State Forty Eight in 2013, they were operating out of a spare room in a house in Chandler. Seven years later, the trio has expanded State Forty Eight to two locations—one in Phoenix and one in Chandler—not to mention the hundreds of partnerships they have with local municipalities, sports teams and schools.

The business creates specialty shirts, hats, stickers and jackets, but Spangenberg said State Forty Eight is about much more than selling T-shirts and hats.

“We are a fan of representing Arizona with pride,” Spangenberg said. “It’s so much more than just a product to us.”

Spangenberg said he had always had an entrepreneurial spirit and a love of clothing.

“Back-to-school shopping for clothes was my favorite thing,” he said.


Stephen and Spangenberg had been friends since elementary school, and when Stephen pitched the idea of a clothing company rooted in a love of Arizona, Spangenberg knew this was the business he wanted to help create.

Stephen asked his brother, Nicholas, to create the company’s first logo, and from there, the owners said, the company took off.

“It’s surreal; we never really expected it to be what it is now,” Stephen said.

Nicholas said the last seven years have been exciting, but there is even more the business wants to do.

“There are so many cool opportunities out there,” Nicholas said.

State Forty Eight brand clothing items are now available at the Chase Field Team Shop, the Phoenix Suns Team Shop and plenty of other retailers, including some casinos, across the Valley.

The owners said they also make an effort to have philanthropic partnerships in which proceeds go to a nonprofit. One of the company’s shirts is designed for first responders, and proceeds go toward former Diamondbacks player Luis Gonzalez’s nonprofit, Gonzo’s Hometown Heroes Fund. The company also has plenty of partnerships with local cities.

“We started by all buying in with $400 each guy, and to see where we’ve ended up so far is really emotional for us and hard to put into words,” Stephen said.


MOST RECENT

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott sits beside Samsung CEO Dr. Kinam Kim as he announces the company is brining a $17 billion facility to Taylor. (Screnshot via KXAN)
Samsung makes it official: Announcement from Governor's Mansion confirms $17B facility coming to Taylor

Nearly a year after Williamson County officials began pitching Samsung to bring a megafacility to the area, the electronics giant has made it official.

Black Rock Coffee Bar opened a location in downtown Chandler Nov. 19. (Alexa D'Angelo/Community Impact Newspaper)
Black Rock Coffee Bar opens downtown Chandler location

Black Rock Coffee Bar opened its 100th store Nov. 19.

Row of Arizona houses. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
See how Chandler's real estate market fared in October

Chandler continues to see year-over-year increases in home prices across almost all of the city's ZIP codes and fewer active listings. 

Mingle + Graze offers connection, community over grazing tables

Mingle + Graze opened in January 2019 in downtown Chandler. 

Santan Mountain Casino is set to open in the next 24-26 months just outside of Chandler. (Courtesy Steelman Partners)
New casino to open near Chandler; median home prices up more than 25% across Gilbert in Sept. and more top area news

Read the top business and community news from the past week from the Chandler and Gilbert areas.

A new 160-acre, $150 million casino is expected to open just south of Chandler city limits within the next two years. (Courtesy Steelman Partners)
New Casino to open just outside of Chandler

A new 160-acre, $150 million casino is expected to open just south of Chandler city limits within the next two years. 

City's Asian population, businesses see growth

Chandler has the highest Asian population of any other Valley suburb, according to 2020 data available from the U.S. Census Bureau released in September, with 11.9% of the city’s population being Asian, a nearly 4% jump from 2010

Chandler USD is hosting an optional vaccine clinic for children Nov. 20. (Courtesy Fotolia)
Chandler USD to offer optional vaccine clinic for ages 5-11 Nov. 20

Chandler USD is hosting an optional vaccine clinic for children Nov. 20.

Two new businesses are coming soon to Gilbert. (Community Impact Newspaper staff)
2 businesses coming to Gilbert; 9 businesses that have recently opened in, around Chandler and more top area business news

Read the most popular business news from the Gilbert and Chandler areas from the past week.

Two businesses are coming soon to downtown Chandler. (Alexa D'Angelo/Community Impact Newspaper)
The Uncommon, The Tipsy Egg to open soon in downtown Chandler

Signage has gone up for The Tipsy Egg and The Uncommon in downtown Chandler.

Chandler has a variety of holiday-themed events in November and December, including the city's annual Tumbleweed Tree lighting. (Courtesy city of Chandler)
7 things to do around Chandler this holiday season

Here are a few things to get Chandler residents in the holiday spirit.