Friday, June 22, 2007

Companies that Do Well by Doing Good

Last night, I had the tremendous pleasure of joining Pam Gerber of the Entrepreneurs Foundation of North Texas for her “Spirit of Entrepreneurship” Celebration. Honoring philanthropist and business leader Craig Hall, the event was held at EFNT's office at the Communities Foundation of Texas (one of the more beautiful buildings in our city, thanks to the Caruth Family's generosity).

I loved the title of the event: "Building Philanthropy 1 by 1 and 2X4," in honor of Mr. Hall's great record of philanthropy centered on helping individuals and his successful real estate/construction work. The centerpieces were equally brilliant: hardhats and ductwork filled with flowers.

The event was kicked off by Brent Christopher, President and CEO of the Communities Foundation. Pam Gerber then gave out several "NorthStar" awards to an individual and a company that have made a difference in our community: Guy Hoffman (CEO - Metellect Corp.) and TelaDoc Medical Services.

Afterwards, local philanthropist Charles J. Wyly, Jr. introduced the incredibly passionate Roger Staubach for the key note address and introduction of Craig Hall. Mr. Staubach's energy filled the room, and he delighted us all with some on-the-spot jokes about Terry Bradshaw (in response to Mr. Wyly's comment that he had been a Terry Bradshaw fan during Staubach's days at the Dallas Cowboys). He then introduced Craig Hall, whose humility and sincere commitment to "doing well by doing good" was a great joy to witness.

But the real delight of the evening came when Pam Gerber announced the beneficiary of the event: the National Foundation for Teaching Enterpreneurship. Accepting the award was a charming young woman who had won NFTE's local competition in the area of business plans. She will be representing North Texas in the national competition later this year -- and her energy, enthusiasm and sparkling personality showed that she has a great chance at taking the top prize!

I definitely left the night with event envy!

I highly recommend that any corporate leader get involved in EFNT. If you have someone on your board who owns their own business, you should put them in touch with Pam:

The Entrepreneurs Foundation of North Texas (EFNT) promotes and facilitates community involvement and philanthropy for companies. As a designated fund of Communities Foundation of Texas (CFT), EFNT makes it simple for companies to give gack to the community by assisting with organizing volunteer activities for employees, and hosting networking events for senior level management of companies to help grow and strengthen our network of "good corporate citizens."

In establishing a relationship with EFNT, a company networks with like-minded philanthropists while contributing to the greater good of the community. Today there are more than 80 companies in North Texas participating in EFNT, and more than 40 underwriters significantly supporting the effort.

You can learn more about EFNT here: