Recently, our Chairman and Founder Tom Bagamane received two distinguished honors that highlight Tom’s vision and leadership while lifting the efforts of the thousands of our volunteers and their powerful impact on the lives The Giving Spirit serves.
LA's Impact-Maker to Watch in 2018
At a ceremony on January 16th in the historic Los Angeles City Hall Council Chambers, Tom was honored by LA’s City Impact Lab as an Impact-Maker to Watch in 2018. Mayor Garcetti’s former LA Homelessness Policy Director, and current Santa Monica Senior Advisor on Homelessness, Alisa Orduna, nominated Tom for this annual award. It is a distinction for individuals who make a powerful and measurable impact on the city’s many communities and who “continue to do so throughout the year, with significant results.”
Under Tom’s leadership, The Giving Spirit has produced significant results since its inception in 1999. He accepted the award on honor on behalf of the over 15,000 volunteers who have stepped up to serve over 48,500 souls in Greater Los Angeles in those 18 years. Tom exudes gratitude towards the invaluable work of the volunteers. “Their impact is staggering,” he says. “Considering the hundreds of hours that goes into executing our objectives to serve, it is a testament to incredible commitment and belief in the sincerity and impact of our work.”
Father Greg Boyle, Founder of Homeboy Industries, delivered a stirring and compassionate keynote speech focusing on the powerful impact that individuals can make – one life at a time. Whether it is addressing the issues around the unsheltered, human trafficking or gender equality each of the individuals honored that evening made a lasting and measurable impact on those they served. Tom was proud to share that moment with his fellow warriors for justice and humanity.
As Tom described it, we can’t wait for the public sector to always provide solutions to societal issues. “This honor confirmed my belief we inherently have a mandate for Good; whether we choose to accept that challenge defines our path. The manifestation of our calling and the resulting change determines how we lead, inspire and innovate as communities to address our greatest needs.”
Senior Fellow at USC’s Marshall School of Business, Brittingham Social Enterprise Labs
Tom’s other honor was also a surprise. Last August, Tom was appointed Senior Fellow at USC’s Marshall School of Business, specifically at the school’s Brittingham Social Enterprise Lab. Here, Tom teaches and mentors young business students and social entrepreneurs on how to integrate and execute sustainable and profitable business strategies to affect real change in the communities they serve.
Tom is honored to be a part of the Marshall School where he mentors exceptional students on how to simultaneously do Good and make money. He was selected due to his successful track records as both a for-profit entrepreneur as well as with the non-profit success story that is The Giving Spirit. He points to The Giving Spirit’s success as a direct result of the transference of good business practices and skills into the non-profit world.
His current “day-job” is as Founder and Managing Director of Profitable Good Group (PGG). PGG advises CEO’s, investors and boards, on how to identify where their corporate purpose profitably intersects with their revenue goals to address the civic issues and needs of their communities. The agency motto says it all “Good is only Sustainable if it’s Profitable.”
He credits The Giving Spirit’s success in validating his leadership in mobilizing communities. “There is stakeholder demand – consumers, employees, citizens, investors, donors, volunteers – for companies to scale and deploy their resources and business strategy to work together with non-profits to positively impact society through their pursuit of growth and profit,”, Tom confirms.
Whether it’s a Giving Spirit volunteer, a CEO or a USC student Tom strives to equip them with the tools to validate their passion for sustainable impact and true societal evolution.
His fellowship was not the only surprise to come to Tom from this appointment. “I never thought I’d end up a Trojan,” Tom smiles, “and I am truly honored to serve the future at USC.”