If the '80s were a decade of corporate ambition and the '90s are a decade of conscience, then C. Phillip Bundy III is indeed a man of his times.
Mr. Bundy is earning his masters degree in business administration at the University of Maryland in College Park while running his own company: International Golf Outings, which organizes golfing events for corporations. At 25, he's the sort who can wear a button-down shirt, gray suit and shiny shoes with aplomb on the same day he takes a final exam.
But Mr. Bundy will trade in the button-down shirt for a Santa Claus outfit today and Friday as he hands out toys at six Christmas parties for needy children and parents throughout the Baltimore area and Prince Georges County.
The parties are the product of his other company, Children's Favorite Things -- a 9-month-old, non-profit corporation dedicated to raising money to give Christmas toys to those less privileged.
"When I wrote my mission statement for [International Golf Outings], I wrote that in addition to growth and profit, the company's mission would be to lead other entrepreneurs in social responsibility," the Monkton resident explains.
Translation: He thinks businesses should return something to their communities.
Altogether, with the help of the private, non-profit agency, Friends of the Family, Mr. Bundy's company will donate goodies for 14 Christmas parties in seven counties and Baltimore city. About 1,000 children and parents will receive presents. Next year, Mr. Bundy says, his goal is to reach 2,500 children.
"It was very ambitious, but I'm glad we decided to go along with what he wanted to do," says Lynn Dolinger, director of development for Friends of the Family, which coordinates community family support centers throughout the state. "I think in a lot of these cases, these people wouldn't have gotten any presents without this effort."
In nine months, Mr. Bundy raised nearly $10,000 for Children's Favorite Things through private and corporate donations. The largest fund raiser was a Nov. 12 Children's Favorite Things Annual Golf Classic, sponsored by USF&G and held at the Hunt Valley Golf Club. In addition, companies such as Chick-Fil-A, United Artists Theatres, Entenmann's and WMIX-FM chipped in by sponsoring toy drives at malls.
Although inspiration for his first company may have come via business school, he says that kids were the inspiration for Children's Favorite Things.
Last year, as Mr. Bundy watched his niece and nephew open gifts, he began to wonder what children who had nothing did on Christmas: "It made me think about a lot of kids who don't get to see Santa or get presents."