Organic Themes, one of the oldest WordPress theme shops, was founded in 2009 in the town of Lahaina on the island of Maui, which was ground zero for the recent devastating wildfires. Until recently, Lahaina was home to Organic Themes co-founder David Morgan, who hosted the Maui WordPress meetups for years, and co-organized WordCamp Maui in 2015.
Morgan and his co-founder Jeff Milone have been best friends since high school. In 2007, Morgan sold everything and moved to Oahu, working as a freelance designer while living out of his car after arriving.
“While living on Oahu, Jeff and I began working long-distance on freelance WordPress projects,” Morgan said. “This led to the idea of starting a theme business together, and I invited Jeff to Hawaii in 2009. While he was visiting me on Oahu, we flew to Maui and fell in love with the island. We decided to start our business there.”
Organic Themes operated out of Lahaina for ten years before Morgan eventually returned to the mainland to start his family in Sarasota, Florida. Milone still resides in Maui part-time.
“We have friends that have lost their homes,” Morgan said. “We’ve been in touch with old neighbors and friends, and it’s been beyond shocking for us to see what has happened.”
The company recently created the Kokua Lahaina website and apparel products as a way to give back to their community. The site is built on WordPress and WooCommerce and uses the STAX block theme. Organic Themes is donating all profits to the Maui Strong Fund, which provides shelter, food, financial assistance, and other services to those impacted by the wildfires.