Give Back: Start Where You Started

Before we get into another rad do-gooder interview, I must take a moment to say…


Today is our beloved guest’s birthday!

brunyMike Ambassador Bruny is another year older today and I couldn’t be more thrilled about his totally rad birthday campaign. This year, Mike has donated his birthday to charity: water in lieu of gifts and cards! He’s asked his people to instead donate some good ole cash money to his favorite charity that helps bring clean and safe drinking water to people in developing nations. How cool is that?



Want to wish Mike a happy birthday in a most awesome way? Donate to his campaign here.

Alright, now that the birthday wishes have been doled out… let’s get down to business! I recently found out about Mike’s plans for incorporating charity into his business model and just HAD to share it with my Ignite Your Cause family. Check it out.

Give me the skinny on who you are and what you do.

I’m Mike Ambassador Bruny and I’m a boundary crosser.  By night I work for Intel as an operations manager and ambassador for Intel and by day I’m an entrepreneur.  My main focus is on a project called, “The New Art of Conference Networking,” which helps individuals prepare for conferences and organizers make more networking friendly conferences.

What made you decide to ‘do good’ with your bowtie business venture?

I saw it as a way to give back to different causes I cared about.  Last year was the first collection of my bow tie line and part of the collaboration I had included a charity piece.

There are a ton of charities out there that address the need for access to clean drinking water. What drew you to decide on charity: water to be the non-profit entity you wanted to donate to?

Honestly, I first heard of the organization last year when the founder, Scott Harrison, spoke at a conference I was attending; WDS.  It opened my eyes to the cause so I decided I would donate my birthday the following year and ask folks to donate.

It wasn’t until I had my own water crisis while camping that I decided to use part of the funds from my bow ties to help.

Will you be promoting the charity: water contribution aspect while promoting the new bowtie line that’s coming out? Or are you keeping your do-goodery as a private treat?

I will be promoting the contribution aspect of my bow ties as that is big part of what “The Bow Tie Flow,” is about; Charity, Sustainability and Style.

Do you have any advice for other entrepreneurs who want to incorporate a cause into their business but feel intimidated by the choices?

My thought is to do good and let the world know.  You never know when you may inspire someone else to do the same.  As for selecting which charity I’m a big fan of going with what hits closets to home.  Think about the places you’ve been and the organizations that have helped you, is there a way for you to raise money so others can benefit just like you did?  Last year our donations went to a youth football program where I got my start (see 2 minute talk about it HERE) as an athlete in Brooklyn, N.Y.  Keep this phrase in mind as you select, “Give back: Start where you started.”

Where can friends of Ignite Your Cause connect with you?  

The bow tie flow can be experienced at  My whole body of work can be found at and we can connect via Twitter: @AmbassadorBruny.

A lot of folks struggle with WHICH charity or cause to support with their business because resources can be scarce (whether it’s time or money). Mike’s advice to “start where you started” is a great way to look at your options and begin the brainstorming process! One of the many reasons I chose to start this business in an attempt to support an orphanage is because I am adopted. I was really blessed to have been adopted by a great, big, loving family but there are SO many children who will never get that opportunity. That fact really influenced my decision to give back to kids without families.

If you look back to your roots and to some of your “starting points” in life, what causes come to mind that you have supported in the past or would like to support?


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