Tony Wendorf, of Tony Wendorf & Associates, First Weber Realtors, carries his longstanding passion for charitable giving to the highest level. This past year, he gave to 16 different organizations, and in the year to come, he hopes to continue to expand this base of positive impact in the community.
Wendorf credits his Catholic faith for much of the inspiration and drive behind his charitable activities. In his words, he is “pretty deeply involved in the Catholic church,” and closely follows the Christian tenet and Catholic social teaching of a collective social responsibility to preserve the dignity of our fellow humans, especially those in need.
Wendorf has been a member of St. Anthony on the Lake in Pewaukee for over 30 years, and carries the positive impact of this involvement on his life to this day. In his high school and college days, he enjoyed actively participating in committees and ministries at his church, and in the last ten years, he has been proud to add a greater financial contribution to his work there, in addition to continued gifting of his time. In Wendorf’s words, “It started out with charitable use of my time, energy, resources and prayer, and turned into an opportunity to give financially and make a meaningful impact.”
Wendorf incorporated the Christian cross into the letter “t” in his familiar “TW” brand, sharing with the larger community the wellspring of positive energy he draws from his active faith. He carries the Catholic teachings into all of his endeavors, particularly those involving charitable activities and giving. He thrives on reaching out to others, forging connections, and aiming to better the lives of those in his community and the world around him. “I see it very much as an obligation, and something we’re very proud to be able to do,” Wendorf explained. He holds the highest regard for maintaining the dignity of each person, and sees his charitable activities as one way to further this goal. “More than anything, it’s a call, a responsibility to help our community and participate in bettering it,” he said.
“We try to be very intentional in our giving,” Wendorf explained. He gives to some organizations consistently each year; sometimes, this involves a donation of his personal time, and other times, it includes a financial gift. As someone who has always been “attracted to the concept of giving to make a difference,” Tony Wendorf says he “always [tries] to, if asked, give something.”
Wendorf strives to grow his giving activities in conjunction with his business. Previously, he gave $100 donations for every closing he had, totaling $13,000 recently. This year, he has established a new challenge in his platform for giving. For any client who sends him a referral that results in a closed real estate deal, Wendorf plans to donate both to that client’s charity of choice as well as to the chosen charity of the referred friend. He explained, “The more business we get, the more impact we can make.” He envisions building his charitable impact into the future, stating, “Ultimately, we want to be able to continue to give more and more. I’d love to see us hit that 50,000 [dollar] mark and even 100,000 mark; even in the next five years, [to give] 100,000 dollars back to the community.”
Giving to his community is an integral part of Tony Wendorf’s life. Some of his most memorable honors in this realm have been having the opportunity to be the presenting sponsor for a meaningful event. In his words, “I don’t really do a whole lot ‘little’ in my life.”
Also essential to this life path is Wendorf’s astute recognition that his own blessings are an avenue for sharing with others. He notes that “the financial rewards we’ve been given can bless others. If money comes to you, it just sits there, but if we can spread it out, we can help others.”
For those who wish to make giving a part of their lives, Tony Wendorf encourages a mindset open to sharing at any level. Whether donating time, service, or money, no gift is too small. He often notices that people hesitate to give because they worry that their gift may not be sizeable enough to make a difference. But Wendorf knows that any donation can have a positive impact for someone in need. “Start where you’re at—anything makes a difference—[there is] no amount too little or too big.”