Philanthropy Is Beautiful
Joan Hornig Makes Charity Second Nature
Philanthropy is truly en vogue. Simply look at the initiative that Bill Gates and Warren Buffett undertook with their Billionaire Challenge and one can see how the giving trend is filtering its way from the top down. In Miami, it seems as through every social event has some sort of charity angle attached to it. The spirit of giving is in the air, and not just during the holiday season, but year-round.
So, it was natural for former Wall Street guru turned jewelry designer, Joan Hornig, to lead by example when it came to the profits earned from her collection. A former fundraiser from Harvard who spent two decades in the financial world, Hornig, 55, has designed stunning pieces in 18-karat gold, sterling silver and various precious stones, under the trademark Philanthropy Is Beautiful, since 2003. Prices range from $500 to $16,600, and 100 percent of her profits go to various charities.
Hornig believes that you can lead people to philanthropy, but that only a very special incentive can make charity second nature to them.
“People ask why I don’t keep the money,” she said. “They think success is measured by what you put in your pocket. I get to create beautiful things that make a difference for people. There isn’t anyone who’s been made richer by this experience than I have.”
An initial partnership between Hornig’s foundation and Bergdorf Goodman, where a vitrine of her designs fronts on a busy path in the jewelry department, has since expanded to SABBIA Fine Jewelry located inside The Ritz-Carlton, Key Biscayne, and Neiman Marcus in Palm Beach.
Hornig has also received the support from celebrity clients like Cameron Diaz, Eva Mendes, Megan Fox, and Zoe Saldana. She has also been featured in Oprah Magazine. Philanthropy Is Beautiful, including the new line, offers 700 charities from which to select; the most popular causes are health, environmental, literacy and animal protection, although customers can suggest new causes that are important to them.
Each purchase, and its designated charity, is recorded, and every few months Hornig’s foundation makes a donation to the specified charities.
Now Hornig is working on a video campaign produced by Emmy award winning producer Michael Honablue in which they spotlight philanthropists from around the world by combining stunning visuals with the donor’s own words to demonstrate the importance to give and champion a cause.
Starting in Miami, New York and LA, this campaign is intended to lead up to the launch of their 24/7 streaming Media Network that will allow viewers to access philanthropic content and make donations from multiple devices.
“Our network will highlight the positive aspects of giving and goodwill and build upon the examples set by people like Ms. Hornig,” said Honablue.
The charitable spirit is the cornerstone for a healthy culture and those who embody it should be celebrated. Philanthropy is Beautiful symbolizes this spirit, leading by example from the top down.