Chief Shoe Giver


“Chief Shoe Giver”. That is the job title Blake Mycoskie had at Tom’s Shoes from 2006 to 2019. Others would call him the founder and CEO.

He is a dedicated Christian business leader, integrating his Christian faith and his business savvy.

For every pair of shoes bought from his company, the company donated a new pair of shoes to a child in need. Now, that is doing something that matters. Blake expanded into eyewear and coffee and continued to use this “one for one” model.

Blake’s Christian values and lifestyle permeate everything in his business, without being inappropriate. He also has impacted other business owners and entrepreneurs, encouraging them to create businesses that have a positive impact on the world.

Blake often speaks publicly about how his Christian beliefs influence his commitment to social justice. He sees work as a way to live out his faith.

Some might say “Keep God out of your business”.

In fact, our work can actually thrive when it is guided, day to day, with the values our faith brings to it.

What are some ways you integrate faith in your work life?

What are some ways you wish you did?


1 comment on “Chief Shoe Giver”

  1. Elmer Hall Reply

    Very cool discussion about the power of business giving. Business giving is rather tricky. TOMS (shoes) and Bombas (socks) seem to have very good intentions and have worked very hard to get it right. Giving out shoes (and socks) for every pair sold has potential to undercut the local economies and increase a sense of dependency.
    I discuss the art of giving and the art of giving for businesses in my book on nonprofits & impactful donor giving. But the main thing for all donors is to be vigilant in looking for unintended consequence of donations.
    TOMS has gotten some criticism and has adapted to improved information about poverty and homelessness.
    Wikipedia ( provides a good overview of the history of the TOMS and its “one for one” give-back program. In 2019, Amy Smith, TOMS’ Chief Giving Officer, announced in their 2019 Impact Report that the company would no longer be following the “One for One” business model that TOMS pioneered. “We made the decision to decouple our impact from the One for One model we pioneered, and to expand our giving portfolio to include impact grants. This way, we can support organizations working to address some of today’s most pressing issues.”
    Kudos to TOMS for doing good things to make the world a better place, and for being adaptable and willing to adjust to better ways.

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