Do Right Men 2007: Chris-Gardner

HOME BASE: Chicago, IL PROFESSION: CEO DOING RIGHT: Yes, he is the same Chris Gardner that Will Smith portrayed in the film version of the entrepreneur’s best-selling memoir, The Pursuit of Happyness. However, one of the aspects of Gardner’s life that didn’t make it on the big screen was his philanthropy. He continues to give back to many organizations such as the Glide Memorial United Methodist Church in San Francisco, where he and his son received shelter while they were homeless. “I wake up and open my heart and ask, ‘Lord what you want me to do?’” says Gardner. “Recently, I spent the night with a group of homeless veterans and I don’t just mean Vietnam Vets—I have met some young guys. More than 400,000 homeless are kids under five. I ask you, ‘What did they do to deserve this?’”
ESSENCE.COM Aug, 29, 2008