Bill and Melinda Gates top 2021 philanthropy ranking with gift of $15bn

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The year 2021 saw the largest charitable donations in more than a decade, as billionaires opened their wallets to aid a world ravaged by pandemic.

Bill and Melinda Gates top 2021 philanthropy ranking with gift of $15bn

Leading the Chronicle of Philanthropy’s ranking of contributions last year were Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates and Melinda Gates, who announced their divorce in May. Two months later in July, they donated $15 billion (about 502 billion baht) to their foundation. The money will support work in global health, development, policy and advocacy, and US education.

The gift increased the grant maker’s endowment to about $65 billion and is the Gates’ biggest donation to the foundation since 2000.

Bill and Melinda plan to continue running the foundation together for two years, after which Melinda has the option to resign as co-chair and trustee.

Regardless, they declared that they both intend to keep giving big in the years ahead.
Melinda said she will continue to support efforts to fight poverty and “advance equality for women and girls and other marginalised groups”.

Gates wrote in his Giving Pledge that the work of the foundation will continue to be his “top philanthropic priority” and that he plans to increase his giving in other areas.

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According to the Chronicle, the 10 biggest publicly announced gifts in 2021 were:

1. Microsoft’s co-founder Bill Gates and Pivotal Ventures’s founder Melinda Gates: $15 billion to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

2. (tie) Nike’s co-founder Philip Knight and his wife Penny: $500 million to the University of Oregon

2. (tie) Soros Fund Management chairman George Soros: $500 million to Bard College (New York)

4. Ryan Specialty Group founder Patrick Ryan and his wife Shirley: $480 million to Northwestern University (Illinois)

5. United National Corporation Sanford Health’s chairman Denny Sanford: $350 million to establish a virtual-care hospital

6. United National Corporation Sanford Health’s chairman Denny Sanford: $300 million for graduate medical education and to expand a sports complex

7. Real-estate developer William Goodwin Jr, his wife Alice and their late son Hunter Goodwin: $250 million to establish Break Through Cancer

8. Alibaba Group co-founder Joe Tsa and co-owner of professional sports teams Clara Wu: $220 million to establish the Wu Tsai Human Performance Alliance

9. Amazon’s founder Jeff Bezos: $200 million to Smithsonian Institution’s National Air and Space Museum

10. Co-founder of Morningside Group Gerald Chan: $175 million to the University of Massachusetts Chan Medical School

Published : January 06, 2022

By : THE NATION

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