It all started on a mission trip to Rwanda, Africa. There, God touched the heart of our founder, Michele Dudley, and ultimately the heart of our co-founder, Celeste Bundy. From that trip and from their hearts grew a ministry built to empower women around the world. Over time, seeing women suffering from human trafficking and other traumatic circumstances, our local ministry was born. Today our vision is to create communities where formerly vulnerable women can live abundant and purposeful lives both in Charlotte, as well as in Africa and South and Central America. The "&" in our logo represents connection to God, to one another, and to resources as lives are transformed.
Thanks for joining us on this journey of empowering lives!
Founder, Board Member
Michele is the heart behind Fashion & Compassion & it's her vision & passion that inspires our work to serve the oppressed & impoverished. She graduated from the University of Southern California & prior to starting Fashion & Compassion, she worked for KPMG & served as a VP for the Global Corporate Investment Banking division at Bank of America. She’s pretty much a superwoman because when she’s not busy being a wife, a mom of 4 & a host to two college students from Burundi, she also serves on non-profit boards & still found time to help found the Ignite Justice Conference! Her heart for people truly knows no bounds & when she’s not out changing the world or driving carpool, you can find her reading or running.
If we had to describe Celeste in one word, it would be "joyful". She's full of funny jokes, always has a positive attitude & can seamlessly insert song lyrics into every conversation. She's always cared about people, but after visiting Rwanda with Michele in 2009, that passion turned into advocacy & she decided right then & there to use her sales, marketing & events experience to help turn entrepreneurship into empowerment. Celeste's highest calling is being a single mom to her daughter, Miah. When she's not busy parenting, networking or traveling, Celeste enjoys spending time with her family & friends. Although Celeste is no longer actively involved in Fashion & Compassion, the F&C Family of Artisans, customers, and staff are eternally grateful to God for the contributions and sacrifices she made to bring empowerment, faith, and joy to their lives. Celeste is now the Executive Director of our partner, Education Equals Hope.