TRAVEL | PHILANTHROPY | FITNESS
In kindergarten, I would stare at my sky blue pencil box with a globe on its face. I used my index finger to trace the places I wanted to discover when I grew up, and today, I am living that childhood dream of traveling while working remotely and exploring what this world has to offer.
My single mother was a consultant who never left me at home. I visited 28 states before I was in junior high, and I moved 7 times before I graduated high school. Flying back and forth to visit my Dad earned me Gold Medallion status as a kid, and I've always felt more comfortable bouncing around, rather than staying in one place. I wrote my college essay about being a "middle seat kid," preferring the middle seat on a plane because it was an opportunity to get to know two people next to me, rather than plugging in headphones and zoning out. I carry that philosophy with me today in travel and life.
Founded and direct the kick-ass non-profit, Brawl for a Cause. Our mission is to donate $1 billion to causes worth fighting for through charity-boxing events unlike any other. To date, we have given away over $700,000 to the charities we support. We train, equip and inspire everyday people to literally brawl for what they believe in most.
- Pubescent Mikado
- Record Breaking Club
- Blind Man Taught Me To Dance
- How Delivering Lost Bags Led To World Travel
- Racing Porters Down Inkan Trail
- Scaling the Ficus in Costa Rica
- Treehouse Trampoline In Cloud Forrest
- Cliff Climbing in Arrifana, Portugal
- Outboxed and Outdrank in Havana
- Beach Soccer Against Cuban Olympic Wrestlers
- Moto Odyssey To Thailand's Sky Temple
- Bamboo Tattoo in Chiang Mai, Thailand
- Ya Fue Tattoo in Phoenix, Arizona
- How $19.27 Changed My Life
- Chess-Boxing 90kg World Champion, Captain of Team USA
- Co-Founder of the Bermuda Entrepreneurship Summit
- Completed 200 hr YTT via Lululemon MindFulOn
- Completed Certified Event Planner program via Emory University
- Model for Chief Tomochichi Statue in Peace Park
- Hosted First Combat Sporting Event at Mercedes Benz Stadium
- Youngest Promoter to Sell Out Georgia Theatre
- Team Captain, Two-Time Soccer State Champion
Sport - ChessBoxing
Book - The Alchemist
Series - Harry Potter
Author - Michael Crichton
Movie - Forrest Gump
TV Show - The Office
Music - Funk
Artist - Trombone Shorty
Dance - Swing
Clothes - Lululemon
Water - Defiance Fuel
Heroes - Muhammad Ali, Steve Jobs, Joe Rogan
I remember the day I learned the word philanthropy. It was the same day I learned the word entrepreneur. I was in Mr. Barry's 4th Grade Class, and we were talking about Andrew Carnegie. When I got home, I asked my parents about other billion dollar businessmen who used their success to help people. I came to associate entrepreneurialism with philanthropy. Before that day, I wanted to be a missionary when I grew up. Then, I read about Rockefeller, Buffett and Gates. I wanted to be like them, but believed I could help people before making millions.
In college, I started an organization called Brawl for a Cause, which empowers everyday people to literally fight for what they believe in. In 2016, the IRS certified BFAC as a Non Profit Organization, and we broke the $100,000 donated milestone. In February 2018, we hosted our 10th event in Mercedes Benz Stadium and raised over $200,000 for 30 unique causes.
I'm proud of our progress, but we have a long way to go. My mission is to brawl for $1 billion donated in my lifetime, and together, Brawl Nation can accomplish this mission. Join the movement here.
Follow along @BrawlforaCause for more kick-ass content.
I'm a fighter. It's who I am.
Growing up in Philly, My favorite thing to do was wrestle with my uncles. They would crush me over and over again, grinding me into the carpet and giving me noogies, but I would live for the moment when I made them tap out or "cry uncle."
As I grew, my mother empowered me to try every sport I could, and I would always bug my dad to hike, pillow fight or play catch when he visited. I loved taekwondo, soccer and lacrosse most as a child, and as I matured, I chose to play club soccer year-round, traveling every weekend to a different tournament in a different state. I received interest from several colleges to play at the next level, but decided to go a different direction.
At University of Georgia, I found my passion, boxing. I built a routine, social media following and business around the sport. I competed in the amateur division and against club boxing teams from other colleges. It felt like chess with my body, the ultimate form of competition. I loved every second of it. Boxing taught me to roll with life's punches, to get up when I get knocked down, and to face my fear.
Now, I share the sport with others through beginner boxing classes and high-end, high-intensity, one-on-one boxing mitt work training. If you're looking for a challenge to take your fitness and focus to the next level, look no further.
I'm obsessed with the discipline, drive and confidence that comes with a fit lifestyle, and I enjoy sharing my learnings and progress with others through @MattThomas_Fit.