During the second event of the 2017-18 Winter Park Institute season, Lauren Bush Lauren will inspire her audience to “Help FEED the World” through her social business mission.
This article originally appeared in Winter Park Magazine’s summer 2017 issue. It is republished here with permission.
As the granddaughter of former President George H.W. Bush and niece of former President George W. Bush and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, Lauren Bush Lauren certainly has politics in her DNA. However, she became a fashion model and clothing designer instead whose social consciousness led her to co-found FEED, a business whose mission is to “create good products that help feed the world.”
Her passion for battling hunger came to the forefront in 2004 when she was named honorary student spokesperson for the U.N. World Food Program. In that role, she traveled to an array of countries and learned firsthand about issues of poverty and deprivation.
Back in the U.S., Lauren—who’s married to the son of fashion designer Ralph Lauren, which explains the twin first and last names—designed the FEED 1 bag, which when purchased would feed one school-aged child for one year.
Photo courtesy of FEED
Today, FEED bags are sold in a variety of models, including duffel bags, backpacks, and totes. Each is emblazoned with a numerical value that indicates how many children are fed from the proceeds.
Most FEED merchandise—manufactured under fair-labor conditions using organic or environmentally friendly materials—is sold online at feedprojects.com. The World Food Program administers the distribution of funds and food.
Although FEED—of which Lauren serves as CEO—isn’t a nonprofit, the company gives away most of its earnings. That’s why Lauren describes the enterprise as “social entrepreneurism.”
Whatever you choose to call it, since its inception in 2007, FEED has provided more than 94 million meals around the world, primarily in Africa and East Asia. In the U.S., FEED works through Feeding America, the nation’s largest domestic hunger-relief organization.
Photo courtesy of FEED
Additionally, the company has forged successful partnerships with such companies as Clarins, Disney, DKNY, Gap, Godiva, Links of London, Pottery Barn, Rachel Roy, Target, Tory Burch, Toms, and Whole Foods.
Lauren, a graduate of Princeton University, is also chairman of the board of the FEED Foundation, a related nonprofit that supports other programs working to fight hunger and eliminate malnutrition.
For her work with FEED, Lauren was named one of Fortune’s “Most Powerful Women Entrepreneurs” in 2009, and one of Inc.’s “30 Under 30” in 2010. She has also received awards from various humanitarian organizations.
Lauren Bush Lauren
How to FEED the World, One Bag at a Time
Tuesday, October 10, 7:30 p.m.
Tiedtke Concert Hall
Ticket prices: $10-$25
Rollins faculty, staff, and students receive free admission to Winter Park Institute events. Faculty and staff members can request two free tickets, and Rollins students can request one free ticket. To reserve your tickets, contact the Rollins box office at BoxOffice@rollins.edu or 407-646-2145.