With every pair of TOMS shoes purchased, the company gives a new pair to a child in need. One for One: the motto for a movement to create a better tomorrow by taking action today. The company name, “TOMS” stems from the word “tomorrow” and evolved from the concept, “Shoes for Tomorrow.”
The company was founded in 2006 by Blake Mycoskie (not a guy named Tom), an entrepreneur from Arlington, TX and a contestant on the second season of the Amazing Race. Mycoskie was motivated to start TOMS during a trip to Argentina. After witnessing the extreme poverty and the resilient spirit of the South American people, Mycoskie said he “…was instantly struck with the desire — the responsibility — to do more.”
The inspiration behind the classic TOMS’ shoe design came from farmers and civilians that wear the traditional Argentine alpargata shoes everyday. These rubber and canvas sandals have a glove-like fit that allows for ventilation. The comfortable alpargatas have been a staple of the Argentine culture for hundreds of years.
TOMS gave the one millionth pair of new shoes to a child in need in September 2010. The company’s non-profit charity, Friends of TOMS, gives shoes and works with charitable partners in over 20 countries.