The Muffin Man giveth

Thaddeus Pinckney knows who the muffin man is, and he doesn't live on Drury Lane.

Armed with a bachelor's degree in food science from Rutgers University and an master's degree in marketing from the University of Albany, the Schenectady man has only one goal in mind: spreading goodwill with a bag of baked goods.

Originally, I was a food scientist. Kool Aid was my thing, said Pinckney.

Pinckney said he was the first undergrad at Rutgers to receive a patent, and he worked to create new drink flavors. After graduating in 1999, Pinckney attendrf the University at Albany and graduated with a marketing degree to help continue his goal of creating his own brand of baked goods.

Working in malls, delivering to local coffee shops and turning to the Internet, Pinckney created Luvins Muffins in May of 2001.

"The whole game plan was how to make profits off this one thing," said Pinckney. "If you don't have the volume, you're in trouble."

The peppy Pinckney became successful in bringing his brand to local and online markets and began to share his love for muffins with those in need.

"People weren't buying the products because they were muffins, but because they were doing good for others," said Pinckney.

Using his Web site, luvinsmuffins.com, and his own personal blog, "The Muffin Man Gives," Pinckney is spreading his joy for food and giving across the area.

"No one knows exactly what other people are going through," he said. "We're all so needy it's almost a taboo to talk about. It's sad really."

In helping people through tough times, Pinckney has seen both the good and bad parts of the emotional spectrum.

"You see the rawest of emotions. It makes you do a lot of soul searching," he said.

Through his Web site, Pinckney has been able to bring about goodwill to people in the region by brightening the day of the underprivileged and forgotten. In recent blog posts, the Muffin Man talks about delivering baked goods to toll booth operators, office cleaning ladies and mourning families at wakes.

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