A Lesson in Giving

Furniture maker Sagus has learned about the benefits of taking its R&D to needy schools

BRYAN REGAN—WONDERFUL MACHINE FOR TIME

A letter from a former student to Obama about her school prompted Sagus to donate new furniture to J.V. Martin, as school in Dillon, S.C.

Chicago-based Sagus International has been making furniture for schools in the U.S. and U.K. for more than 40 years. In a billion-dollar industry built on securing contracts from state and local school boards across the U.S., Sagus, which, according to industry reports, has sales north of $100 million, clearly wins its share. It ranks at or near the top of all segments of educational furnishings. Yet CEO Darryl Rosser felt that a company so closely linked with education should be doing more than just selling furniture. So in 2008, the gregarious Alabama native challenged his 800 employees to find a way...

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