Madison Lynn Callaghan
Company: Bongani Swimwear
Position: Designer and Owner
WHERE WERE YOU BORN?
HOW LONG HAVE YOU LIVED IN CHARLOTTE AREA?
TELL US A LITTLE BIT MORE ABOUT YOU?
I grew up on the countryside of Lake Norman in the small town of Sherrills Ford. I was the first person in my high school granted the opportunity to be a full-time online student to continue my modeling career, paving the way for other kids with big dreams to do so. After graduating high school early, I decided to pursue sports broadcasting, landing a job with the Carolina Panthers and guest hosting on Charlotte’s 7:30 am ESPN 20/20 baseball low-down for the Charlotte Knights. After working 2 years I decided to do something much more impactful. I’ve always wanted to start something that matters, something that impacts lives and allows others to carry that influence forward. I started my first company at 19, donating to United Through Sport in South Africa with every bikini I sold. Helping children in disadvantaged communities reach their full potential in sport, education, and health was an inspiring and humbling experience.
DURING YOUR TIME VOLUNTEERING FOR A COMMUNITY ACTIVITY OR PROJECT, WHAT IS YOUR MOST MEMORIAL MOMENT?
My mom is a home care nurse for children in Charlotte with CP (cerebral palsy) I often come with her to meet the kids, and they bring so much light into my life. One little girl named Dolce was telling me how she had never celebrated Easter before, so I decided to hold an Easter Egg hunt at my house for Dolce and her 3 sisters. The smiles they had and the thanks you’s and talks of remembering it forever gave me such a strong feeling of joy!
IN YOUR OPINION, HOW DO YOU CONTRIBUTE TO THE COMMUNITY?
Through work: I’ve helped kids of all ages around the world. My swimsuit company Bongani Swimwear donates to “United Through Sport” where they help kids using direct sports coaching for its health benefits, improved emotional well-being, increased life skills such as teamwork, leadership, decision making, and communication. Using sport to discuss critical issues by talking about topics like HIV/AIDS awareness in a fun and interactive manner on the sports field and improving education by providing ways to success for talented and dedicated individuals through scholarships to top local schools and education are just two of the many ways this organization helps children across the world. My skincare company Veni Amavi donates to “The United Nations Foundation” for Women and Girls. They use programs like Strengthening UN capacity, promoting reproductive health, investing in adolescent girls, council of women leader’s world leaders, and women’s economic empowerment to improve the lives of women and girls around the globe.
Through play: I love doing community work with food banks within charlotte, the winter Special Olympics held at Appalachian ski mountain, and volunteering with Special needs Schools within North Carolina. I’m an avid runner, I always participate in runs like the “Race for A Cure-Susan G. Komen-Charlotte”, “Lets Talk about Mental Health Awareness Walk”, “Earth Day 10k Charlotte”, and “See The World A Different Way 5k” Awareness about Autism to name a few! I’ve also walked in a few Charity fashions shows and Charlotte Fashion Weeks since I was 15!
WHAT ARE YOUR HOBBIES OR INTEREST?
I love hosting events, recently hosted the holiday ball for “The Youth Dance Foundation” raising awareness for dance in Charlotte’s Youth. I grew up playing every sport with my three sisters, and in my free time I love trying out new fitness studios in Charlotte. I continue to model in my free time, but only for certain brands/campaigns (recently being Malibu boats Summer Campaign) I am a proud Catholic and love helping and giving as much as possible when I can. I do tons of Pop-up shops within the south having two companies, and I love how many new people I get to meet while working. I am a AVID Chick-Fil-A supporter as well (who isn’t) !
WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE QUOTE THAT YOU STAND BY?
“There can be no greater gift than that of giving one’s time and energy to helping others without expecting anything in return.” Nelson Mandela
WHERE DO YOU SEE YOURSELF IN 5 YEARS? 10 YEARS?
In 5 years I hope to have many mission trips abroad with my church and to be on “FORBES: TOP 30 UNDER 30” It’s been a lifetime goal of mine. In 10 years I hope to have multiple successful businesses, several investment properties, a NY Times Best Seller, and lastly have a lasting impact on a life. (Yes, i am a BIG dreamer. Everything seems impossible till it’s done!)
CAN YOUR SHARE ONE THING THAT IS ON YOUR BUCKET LIST?
When I was old enough to know what it was, I’ve always wanted to adopt. My biggest goal when I finally settle down for a family is to adopt a teenager in need. *explains why The Blind Side is my favorite movie*
WHEN WAS THE LAST TIME YOU USED YOUR PASSPORT?
I traveled to Shanghai this past December and did some design research for my swimwear line, Bongani Swimwear.
WHAT IS A FUN FACT ABOUT YOURSELF THAT NO ONE KNOWS?
I’ve been riding stand-up jet-skis since i was 6!
WHO IS YOUR HERO?
My parents are the real MVP’s. They have come up from the toughest of childhoods and made a success story. I don’t know anyone that gives more than my parents, they’ve taught me to be selfless and charitable before anything else. I’ve watched my mother and father countless times lay on their backs for someone they don’t know, just to give them a helping hand.
WHAT WAS THE LAST BOOK YOU READ?
“The Sell – The Secrets of Selling Anything to Anyone” By Fredrick Eklund.
WHAT WAS THE LAST MOVIE YOU SAW?
“The Blind Side” my favorite movie.
WHAT WAS THE LAST CONCERT YOU SAW?
Florida Georgia Line