About Us



Gapelii Brand Is an emerging high-end luxury clothing and shoe company offering the latest in men’s, women’s and children’s fashion. Our apparel and shoes are designed to influence, encourage and make everyone feel comfortable wearing our brand. Although a relatively small company, 10% of all our proceeds and sales are donated back to the communities we serve, providing scholarships, clothing and food to under-served populations and youth.


Provide premium quality and service to our customers, inspire growth and success to one another, and give back to support our surrounding communities.


Gapelli Brand was founded in August 2019 by Founder & CEO, Toja Hodge and Co- Founder/Chief Operating Officer, Andrew Akufo in Hobbs, NM. The clothing company grew from a vision by Toja Hodge of creating a fashion brand that would not only provide the best quality in material and comfort for customers but, represent all demographics throughout the world and provide a unique and sustainable means to support our local communities. Gapelii Brand was also created to inspire youth and other young entrepreneurs to pursue their goals, dreams and passions and furthermore, prove that a small-town, Black-owned business can evolve and develop to have a significant impact on our fashion industry and the world if there is a determination to do so. Gapelii Brand currently operates out of Hobbs, New Mexico and the San Francisco Bay Area in California, serving customers in the U.S. and internationally across the globe.


Photo by Brian Henning

Toja Hodge

Co-Founder/CEO, Gapelii Brand

Toja Hodge was born in Lubbock, Texas but, moved was raised in Hobbs, New Mexico. Toja graduated from the University of Phoenix in 2016 with an Associates of Arts degree in Business. He also earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Audio Production. Hodge always possessed an entrepreneurial mindset, but his ambitions came to fruition in 2013 after meeting his now current business partner, Andrew Akufo. Toja's passion for art and design, coupled along with his involvement in the media and entertainment industries, lead to him creating Gapelii Brand and later partnering with Akufo to officially establish the luxury clothing company in 2019. Hodge currently resides in Hobbs, NM with his wife and son.


Photo by Nicole Schlaeppi


Andrew Akufo

Co-Founder/Chief Operating Officer, Gapelii Brand

Andrew Akufo was born and raised in Oklahoma City, OK. After graduating from the University of Central Oklahoma in 2012 with a Bachelor’s degree in Studio Art, Akufo moved to Hobbs, New Mexico where he met future Gapelii Brand, CEO, Toja Hodge and worked as the full-time Executive Director of the Center for the Arts. In 2019, Akufo’s passion for marketing and promoting lead him to partner with Hodge to help found Gapelii Brand, LLC. Akufo has studied art in multiple countries including the U.S., Italy, Hungary and Slovenia. He moved from Hobbs, NM in 2018 to Santa Rosa, CA where he currently works and resides. 




Derek Crutchfield

Director of Public Relations, Gapelii Brand

Derek Crutchfield was born in Martinez, California and is San Francisco Bay Area native. Derek graduated from Sonoma State University in 2000 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Environmental Studies and has worked in the environmental field for 25 years. Derek connected with Gapelii Brand Co-Founder/Chief Operating Officer Andrew Akufo in 2019. Akufo quickly realized Crutchfield's progressive thought process, extroverted personality, passion for people, outgoing and forward thinking fashion sense as well as his attentiveness to upcoming fashion trends. Crutchfield joined the Gapelii Brand team in October 2021 and currently works as the luxury brand's Director of Public Relations.