“Everybody should find a way to articulate their beliefs and values as part of their efforts to launch their children into adult lives,” Michael Rosengarden, proud husband and father of three, declares. “The test is to walk the talk too.”
Walking the talk, living those values, is also the best way to launch a family owned business and other community organizations doing impactful work into greater success too. Rosengarden proves this with his work as CEO of the business his father founded, Autohaus On Edens Mercedes Benz, and on behalf of many nonprofits too.
“I realized how blessed my life was and why it’s important to give back when a friend got me involved with Prevent Child Abuse America.” He continues, “That’s when my view of the world changed. I learned what child abuse does to our children and its cost to us as a society.”
Rosengarden has made a significant difference with other nonprofits too. A Safe Place – offering emergency shelter, transitional housing, counseling and advocacy help for victims of domestic abuse – has grown substantially during his tenure on the board. Part of his support for the Illinois Holocaust Museum included a documentary sponsorship which earned him a small piece of a Chicago Emmy. However, his desire to get his entire family and company more engaged in and united behind a philanthropic effort was when a member of his family received a difficult cancer diagnosis, Multiple Myeloma. That’s what really kicked Rosengarden into giving back high gear during the past several years.
Rosengarden’s deep dive into research about Multiple Myeloma led him to support the visionary work of Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF) in general and University Of Chicago’s Andrzej Jakubowiak, MD, PhD in particular. “The MMRF’s collaborative model is revolutionizing all of cancer research,” Rosengarden explains. The team he fields for the MMRF’s Race For Research 5K walk/run fundraiser has already raised over $100,000.
Each spring, Rosengarden also organizes his entire business around LAUNCH: Driving Fashion Forward, a fashion show fundraiser that features local businesses and a design competition for graduating Columbia College fashion design majors. Autohaus transforms its showroom into a runway venue a la Fashion Week and puts on a great party. Past beneficiaries include A Safe Place, ORT, Highland Park Hospital Women’s Board and the Winnetka Women’s Club. (See looks from last year’s event here.) This year’s beneficiary will be the Glenview Women’s Club.
Rosengarden particularly delights in the results of the design competition though. “It’s an unbelievable feeling when you change a life. I love that moment when we give the scholarship check.”
By walking the talk and living his values, Rosengarden has launched not just his own children, but also his business and other organizations that make the world better into greater success too.