A visionary global leader, social entrepreneur, and bestselling author, Blake Mycoskie is the Founder and Chief Shoe Giver of TOMS, and the creator of the brand’s One for One® movement. Having championed a forward-looking model for corporate responsibility and conscious consumerism, he continues to guide TOMS in its mission to improve lives through business with the targeted donation of products and services, as well as the economic stimulus of local production and job creation.
While traveling in Argentina in 2006, Blake saw the hardships faced by children growing up without shoes. This gave him the idea to create a for-profit business with giving at its core: for every pair of shoes the company sold, they would give a new pair to a child in need. Blake’s vision evolved into the One for One business model, the foundation for TOMS.
Realizing how many children TOMS was able to help by providing footwear, Blake sought out other vital needs. This led to offering eyewear, coffee, anti-bullying initiatives, and programs for safe water, safe births, and solar light. Woven into the giving process is a commitment to creating jobs in developing countries. Under Blake’s leadership, TOMS works with countless Giving Partners such as UNICEF, Save the Children, Partners in Health, and the Red Cross. Since 2009, he has collaborated with Charlize Theron on shoe collections that directly benefit her charity, Africa Outreach Project, which helps South African youth affected by HIV/AIDS.
Start Something That Matters, Blake’s 2011 New York Times best seller, details his personal story and calls on others to incorporate giving into business. In 2015, he founded the Social Entrepreneurship Fund, which invests in innovative, socially conscious companies that create change.
Blake’s trailblazing business approach has earned a myriad of accolades. In 2009, Blake and TOMS received the Secretary of State’s Award of Corporate Excellence. In 2014, Richard Branson asked Blake to join The B Team, a group of worldwide leaders that promote the well-being of people and the planet. In 2015, Harvard’s School of Public Health accorded him its Next Generation Award, which honors a leader under age 40 whose commitment to health as a human right inspires young people to make “health for all” a global priority. In 2016, he received the Cannes Lion Heart Award, which honors a person or company that has made a positive impact through innovative use of its brand power. Blake and TOMS have been featured in countless publications, including Inc., Time, and Fortune.