The Frances Moody Newman Distinguished Lecture Series presents:

Blake Mycoskie, Founder and Chief Shoe Giver of TOMS Shoes


The RGK Center welcomed Blake Mycoskie, founder and Chief Shoe Giver of TOMS Shoes, as the third speaker of the RGK Center's Frances Moody Newman Distinguished Lecture Series on Tuesday, March 2, 2010. Over 650 people joined us at the AT&T Conference Center to hear Blake's story.

Blake discussed the starting of TOMS Shoes and shared his amazing experiences as a social entrepreneur. We gave away one hundred pairs of free TOMS Shoes to lucky audience members, and following the lecture, we hosted a Style Your Sole party fully stocked with art supplies for them to decorate their new TOMS.

See pictures of the event!

Blake Mycoskie and TOMS Shoes

Blake Mycoskie

In 2006 an American traveler, Blake Mycoskie, befriended children in Argentina and found they had no shoes to protect their feet. Wanting to help, he created TOMS Shoes, a company that would match every pair of shoes purchased with a pair of new shoes given to a child in need. One for One. Blake returned to Argentina with a group of family, friends and staff later that year with 10,000 pairs of shoes made possible by caring TOMS customers. Since then, TOMS has given over 400,000 pairs of shoes to children in need.

Blake is an entrepreneur and has created five businesses since college. His first was a successful national campus laundry service; his second start-up, Mycoskie Media, caught the attention of Clear Channel Media and was bought by them. Between business ventures, Blake competed in the CBS’ primetime series, The Amazing Race. With his sister, Paige, Blake traveled the world and came within minutes of winning the $1 million dollar grand prize.

After The Amazing Race, Blake attempted to create the first TV cable channel dedicated entirely to reality programming. His fourth start-up was an online driver’s education school that featured hybrid cars and SUVs. After returning from a holiday in Argentina, Blake decided to sell this business to focus full-time on his latest idea, the creation of TOMS Shoes.

About the Frances Moody Newman Distinguished Lecture Series

The Frances Moody Newman Distinguished Lecture Series promotes philanthropy, community service, and volunteerism by inviting philanthropic leaders to The University of Texas at Austin to discuss how their personal values, beliefs, and experiences shape the mission and method of their giving.

The Moody Foundation of Galveston was created for the perpetual benefit of present and future generations of Texans by William Lewis Moody, Jr. and his wife, Libby Shearn Moody.

The RGK Center for Philanthropy and Community Service initiated this lecture series to explore how personal motivations and experiences inspire giving. The lecture series uses the theme of My Values, My Philanthropy to provide a public forum for discussing how individual values shape the philanthropic and nonprofit landscape.


RISE Austin

RISE is a free conference for entrepreneurs of all types, providing a forum where you can connect and exchange ideas that inspire the entrepreneurial spirit. RISE is not your ordinary conference. Because RISE is designed for entrepreneurs, by entrepreneurs, the format is hands-on, high-energy and free flowing.

Dell Social Innovation Competition

The RGK Center and Dell invite aspiring social entrepreneurs to enter the 2010 Dell Social Innovation Competition! College students worldwide are challenged to dream up ingenious ideas that can change the world. The student or student team that best combines creativity and innovation to tackle a pressing social issue wins $50,000 in seed funding to launch their idea into the world.