Thursday August 30, 2012
After spending as little as five minutes with Craig Bond in his office, it is easy to tell what kind of person he is and what is important to him. His top priority is his family. Pictures of his wife Jennifer, and his two children, Annabella and Sawyer are all over his office. The Red Sox and golf are tied for second, and he brings all of his passion to both the baseball team, and playing golf. Craig, a resident of South Burlington, works in the family business, Bond Auto Parts, which is an aftermarket auto parts supplier with stores throughout Vermont, New Hampshire, Massachusetts and northern New York. There are 24 stores in Vermont alone. Bond Auto Parts was started by Earl and Mary Bond in 1956. Their first store was in Barre, and the family continues to have their offices and warehouse there. Since then, three generations of Bond family members have carried on the tradition of running not only a top quality auto parts chain but a business that values each of its employees very highly.
Bond Auto Parts has had a history of offering their support to many different organizations and charities over the years. It was in 2004, after having attended a Red Sox game, that they decided they would like to dedicate to a cause such as the “Jimmy Fund.” The task of finding the “right” organization was given to Craig Bond. Craig selected three different Vermont organizations and after careful research and thought, Make-A-Wish Vermont was chosen. When I asked Craig how the company came to the final decision, he said it came down to three things:
1. Make-A-Wish serves only Vermont children and their money is spent locally
2. 80% of every dollar spent goes directly towards granting wishes
3. The mission supports both children and their immediate family
2004 marked the first year Bond Auto Parts became the presenting sponsor at Make-A-Wish Vermont’s annual Walk for Wishes. Every year since then, they have made this a tradition and a commitment. They encourage employees from each store to attend the Walk, they promote the Walk at all of their store locations, members of the Bond family serve on Walk Committee’s and Advisory Councils, they create a Bond Auto Parts Walk Team, and recently formed a Bond Golf Team that won $10,000 in an All-Charity Golf Classic. Their support goes on and on.
Make-A-Wish Vermont grants wishes to Vermont children with life-threatening medical conditions to enrich the human experience with hope, strength and joy. Since their inception, in 1989, Make-A-Wish Vermont has granted over 600 wishes. It relies solely on the support of donors, events, and corporate partners, like Bond Auto, to fulfill their mission. The average cost of a wish is $11,000.
For more information about Make-A-Wish please visit www.vermont.wish.org or if you would like information about this year’s upcoming Walk for Wishes at Dorset Park in SB visit www.walkforwishesvt.org.