Young Influentials

NFL Star Founds Fashion Brand for a Cause With Former TOMS Exec

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Philadelphia Eagles tight-end Brent Celek didn’t just spend the off-season training -- he also launched a fashion brand. This past spring he co-founded REVISIT, a line of bracelets, necklaces and leather bags with Jill Dilorio, a sales and retail marketing veteran who spent 7 years at TOMS Shoes.

Thanks to Dilorio’s influence, the line borrows from TOMS’ signature “One for One” business model known for matching every pair of shoes purchased with a pair for a child in need. For REVISIT, she’s developed a “Quarter-Back” model with Celek. The company’s leather accessories will donate 25 percent of profits to help preserve U.S. national parks. Celek says that while touring several parks, he and Dilorio learned that funding cuts led to fewer rangers, shuttering of children’s programs and overall park closures. The REVISIT founders partner directly with parks or support organizations to help fund specific projects at sites like the Independence Historical Park and the Yellowstone National Park, among others.

Related: The Kickoff: Three Startups Born from the NFL

Just as TOMS expanded on its One for One model by launching TOMS Eyewear and TOMS Roasting Co (which provides clean water for every bag of coffee purchased), REVISIT is also designed as a multi-pronged social enterprise. To support the American maker movement, for example, Celek says the company partners with local artisans. These designers source the leather from mature cows raised for food to create the collection.

While it backs the Made in USA cause and highlights the need to source sustainably-made goods, Dilorio and Celek emphasize their company's main focus: supporting the national parks. The social startup veteran has learned the importance of not diverting from the mission. “If you don't say no then you don't have a strategy,” she says. She adds “When building a business it is crucial to keep your eye on the goal, work to avoid daily distractions and then recognize every member of the team for the contributions.”

Celek clarifies that at the moment, his goal is to win on the field but looks forward to revisiting his venture during the off-season.

Related: Terrell Owens, 50 Cent, Timbaland Team Up With Celebrity-Driven App ‘Hang w/’

Edition: December 2016

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