Avia was founded in Oregon in 1979 by Jerry Stubblefield. "avis", meaning "bird" is used as a brand name for a sports shoe to suggest aviation.
The shoes are known for their performance, durability and comfort. Avia made its name as a leading brand in the 1980s for its line of women's walking and aerobics shoes, as well as men's shoes.
In the late 1980s and early 1990s, Avia had a thriving line of basketball shoes; among those who wore Avia were Scottie Pippen, John Stockton, John Salley, AC Green, and Clyde Drexler.