He’s a kid and he’s a CEO and he’s gaining some much deserved recognition.

Alex Hart-Upendo is the 10 year old founder and CEO of Build-a-Bow, a budding non-profit custom bow-tie business and community project based out of Racine.

Alex has been recognized by the state of Wisconsin and Governor Walker for his efforts, and even has his own holiday as well as been featured on national TV.

Even with all his amazing accolades, he was having a hard time getting people to support his first fashion show.

In the effort to get people to come, his mother Karee Upendo took to Facebook a few hours before show time. She offered to pay people for their attendance in support of her son. There was an outpour of endearing comments, wishing Alex good luck on his showcase. People from all over California, Georgia, Michigan, Texas and New York just to name a few.

Some were wondering why his parents weren’t in the audience. His parents were unable to root for him from the crowd, because one was on the runway modeling for him.. Yes his dad! And his mom, well she was showcasing as well and getting her models prepared backstage.

Each designer in the showcase was competing for their chance at a New York Fashion Week showcase. The designer to get the most support to show up would win a showcase scheduled for September 10th, in New York.

His mom said that if she won she planned to give her showcase to Alex because in her words ” He’s the hardest working person I know, he’s selfless and never gives up. He deserves it more than anyone. I mean seriously he made bowties that dispense candy, and had ones with fish in them… Come on people.. Fish! ” She laughed..

Alex said ” Not being able to get anyone to come hurt my feeing’s at first, but after I read all the comments I knew I could do it. I didn’t want to let anyone down. “

Alex’s bowtie creations were definitely one of a kind. Win or loose he’s a winner in my book!

Additionally, Alex has an exceptionally high IQ and experienced homelessness as a child which led to him being isolated and bullied.

At the age of only five, he wanted to take the term “nerd” and turn it in to something cool so he created Build-a-Bow.

Build-a-Bow is a fashion events business that provides attendees the materials and instruction needed to make their very own personalized bow ties and hair bows.

The death of his grandfather (famed UWM football player Eddie “The Pony” Hart) inspired Alex to expand the company in to a non-profit community project with 40% of proceeds go back in to the community.

Alex also wrote a book titled “Bullies, Bowties and Brilliant Alex.”

It’s a multicultural picture book written to encourage the inner entrepreneur in children, while teaching a valuable lesson about bullying.

40% of all book proceeds are donated to underprivileged children and schools, he hosts author reading parties for deserving children and they all get free signed copies of his book including bowtie cookies!

He is also the inventor of Build-A-Shoe which is the first interchangeable shoe design with a patent. He recently traveled 36 hours to take his invention to New York to show the producers of Shark tank. He isn’t allowed to speak about his status with the show after signing contracts with NBC.

Incredibly, Alex forgives his bullies.

“I believe everybody deserves a second chance.”

Search him on Google or follow his Facebook page www.Facebook.com/buildabowtie or his website www.buildabowbyalex.com

More info: buildabowbyalex.com

Alex’s moms post that went viral

Yes a 10 year old is in the “Adult” showcase…

His Hand Painted Monarch Butterfly Bowtie

His Fanny Pack Bowtie

This Thing Dispenses… SNACKS!

Flying Crane Bowtie (Alex’s Dad)

It Took Him 3 Hours To Perfect The Origami Crane

Lego Bowtie.. IT SPINS!


Oh Hello Nature!

Mossin It Up!

Cotton Candy or Fur? Either one.. I’ll Take 2!

Sooo Funky!

Floating Rings… Yes Please!

Head Turner!


Look At The Detail.. This Kids Awesome!

Wait WHAA…

Nothing To See Here People.. Just A Freaking Aquarium Bowtie!

Yup.. I Told You This Kids Amazing!