The 2001 Slate 60: Top Pledges

The 2001 Slate 60: Top Pledges

The 2001 Slate 60: Top Pledges

Analysis of the year's biggest philanthropists.
Feb. 4 2002 6:00 PM

The 2001 Slate 60: Top Pledges

The 60 largest American charitable contributions of 2001.

Donors Who Pledged $25 Million or More

John D. Hollingsworth Jr.

JOHN D. HOLLINGSWORTH JR.—an estimated $400 million bequest to FURMAN UNIVERSITY, GREENVILLE (S.C.) YMCA, and other charities. Mr. Hollingsworth, who died in 2000 at age 83, left 45 percent of his estate to Furman University, 10 percent to the Greenville YMCA, and the remainder to other charities in Greenville County. He owned land throughout South Carolina and two companies in Greenville County—Verdae Properties, a land-development company, and John D. Hollingsworth on Wheels, a supplier of textile-carding machinery. Although Mr. Hollingsworth's estate has not yet been valued, his real-estate holdings are estimated to be worth approximately $400 million.

GORDON AND BETTY MOORE—a $300 million pledge to the CALIFORNIA INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY. Mr. Moore, 73, a co-founder of Intel, and his wife, Betty, 72, last year pledged $300 million to the California Institute of Technology, in Pasadena, to be matched by grants from their foundation. Last year the Moores also gave more than $5.8 billion to the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, in San Francisco.

WILLIAM T. III AND CLAUDIA COLEMAN—a $250 million pledge to the UNIVERSITY OF COLORADO SYSTEM. Mr. Coleman, 54, is founder and chairman of BEA Systems, a software company in San Jose, Calif. Mrs. Coleman, 54, is a former manager at Hewlett-Packard. Their donation established the Coleman Institute for Cognitive Disabilities, which will support research, development of technological tools to help people with cognitive disabilities, and other efforts to help people with such disabilities. Last year the Colemans contributed $10 million of that amount, paid $614,867 of a previous pledge, and gave the university an additional $42,327.

ROBERT EDWARD (TED) TURNER—a $250 million pledge to the NUCLEAR THREAT INITIATIVE. Mr. Turner, 63, vice chairman of AOL Time Warner, in New York, and founder of CNN and Turner Broadcasting System, pledged $250 million to establish the Nuclear Threat Initiative, in Washington, which seeks to reduce the threat posed by nuclear arms and other weapons of mass destruction. He paid $10.7 million of that amount. Mr. Turner also gave $74.8 million to the U.N. Foundation, a group in Washington that he founded to support the work of the United Nations, and $5.6 million to the Better World Fund, in Washington, which Mr. Turner founded to educate people about the work of the United Nations. He gave $130,000 to other groups.

SIDNEY KIMMEL$222.5 million in pledges to JOHNS HOPKINS UNIVERSITY and five other nonprofit groups. Mr. Kimmel, 74, chairman of Jones Apparel Group, in Bristol, Pa., pledged $150 million to the Johns Hopkins University Health System, in Baltimore, for cancer research and treatment, and paid $54 million of that amount. He pledged $25 million to the MEMORIAL SLOAN-KETTERING CANCER CENTER, in New York, of which he paid $5 million. The JEWISH FEDERATON OF GREATER PHILADELPHIA and the RAYMOND AND RUTH PERELMAN JEWISH DAY SCHOOL, in Wynnewood, Pa., each received a $20 million pledge, and the NATIONAL CONSTITUTION CENTER, in Philadelphia, received a $5 million pledge; each institution was paid $1 million of the pledged amount. The THOMAS JEFFERSON UNIVERSITY HOSPITAL, in Philadelphia, received a $2.5 million pledge. Mr. Kimmel also gave $30 million to the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts, in Philadelphia; and he paid $7 million to the Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center, in San Diego, and $1 million to the Thomas Jefferson University Hospital, on previous pledges.


LUCILLE STEWART BEESON—a $161 million bequest to SAMFORD UNIVERSITY and 13 charities in the Birmingham, Ala., area. Mrs. Beeson, who died last year at age 95, left $150 million to endow a trust that will support 13 charities in the Birmingham area. The SALVATION ARMY OF JEFFERSON COUNTY, the JIMMY HALE MISSION, UNITED CEREBRAL PALSY OF GREATER BIRMINGHAM, the ALABAMA SHERIFF'S BOYS AND GIRLS RANCHES, the BAPTIST HOSPITALS FOUNDATION OF BIRMINGHAM, CANTERBURY UNITED METHODIST CHURCH, and GATEWAY FAMILY AND CHILD SERVICES will each receive 10.6 percent of the interest earned by the trust. An additional six groups—the BIRMINGHAM HUMANE SOCIETY, the CHRISTIAN SERVICE MISSION, the charity fund of the JUNIOR LEAGUE OF BIRMINGHAM, the ALABAMA ZOOLOGICAL SOCIETY, the BIRMINGHAM BOTANICAL SOCIETY, and the COMMUNITY FOUNDATION OF GREATER BIRMINGHAM—will each receive 4.3 percent. Mrs. Beeson also left $11 million to Samford University, in Birmingham, for scholarships.

Alberto W. Vilar

ALBERTO W. VILAR$116.4 million in pledges to JOHN F. KENNEDY CENTER FOR THE PERFORMING ARTS and four other nonprofit groups. Mr. Vilar, 61, founded Amerindo Investment Advisors, a technology-investment company in New York. His $50 million pledge to the Kennedy Center, in Washington, will establish the Vilar Institute for Arts Management, which will train arts managers and board members, and bring the Kirov Opera and the Kirov Ballet to the center for annual performances over 10 years. A $25 million pledge to the NATIONAL JEWISH MEDICAL AND RESEARCH CENTER, in Denver, will establish a research center on respiratory diseases. A $23.4 million pledge to NEW YORK UNIVERSITY will support a new performing-arts education program. He also pledged $10 million to COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY'S MEDICAL SCHOOL and $8 million to the WASHINGTON OPERA. A spokesman for Mr. Vilar said he had made additional pledges to performing-arts efforts in other countries but would not disclose the amount of those pledges.

HENRY MELVILLE FULLER—an $89.6 million bequest to CURRIER GALLERY OF ART and other groups. Mr. Fuller, who died last year at age 87, left the Currier Gallery, in Manchester, N.H., a bequest comprising $43 million, a collection of 19th-century American paintings worth $2.6 million, his Manchester condominium, and personal property, together worth an estimated $400,000. TRINITY COLLEGE, in Hartford, Conn., where Mr. Fuller received a bachelor's degree in English, was bequeathed $39 million for its endowment; a portion of the gift will fulfill a $1 million pledge that Mr. Fuller made a year ago to benefit the college's library. An additional $4 million will endow the MANCHESTER HISTORIC ASSOCIATION, in New Hampshire, and other nonprofit groups received $280,000 from Mr. Fuller's estate. Mr. Fuller gave $100,000 to the NATIONAL AUDUBON SOCIETY last year before his death as payment on a pledge; his estate paid the remaining $300,000 of that commitment.

PETER B. LEWIS—a $60 million pledge to PRINCETON UNIVERSITY. Mr. Lewis, 68, is chairman of the Progressive Corp., an insurance company in Mayfield Village, Ohio. In 2001, he pledged $60 million to Princeton University, in Princeton, N.J., of which he paid $14.5 million that year, to help build a science library and support its programs. In addition, he gave the university $19.1 million for its human-genomics institute, $16 million to Case Western Reserve University, in Cleveland, to help build a new campus for its management school; $11.5 million to the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, in New York; and $7 million to the American Civil Liberties Union Foundation, in New York. He gave $4.4 million to other nonprofit groups last year.


HERBERT L. BLOCK—a $53 million bequest to the HERB BLOCK FOUNDATION and 19 nonprofit groups. Mr. Block, an editorial cartoonist for the Washington Post who went by the name Herblock, designated in his will that a $51.8 million bequest—including Post stock worth $49.4 million—be used to establish the Herb Block Foundation, in Washington. Mr. Block, who died last year at age 91, also left $1.2 million to 19 charities, including the AMERICAN CIVIL LIBERTIES UNION FOUNDATION, in New York; HANDGUN CONTROL, in Washington; and the PLANNED PARENTHOOD FEDERATION OF AMERICA, in New York.

LEON LEVY—a $50 million pledge to BARD COLLEGE. Mr. Levy, 76, is a retired general partner at Odyssey Partners, a hedge fund in New York. His pledge to Bard College, in Annandale-on-Hudson, N.Y., where he is a member of the board of trustees, will go toward the university's capital campaign and is unrestricted. He paid $25 million of the pledge in 2001. He also contributed $25.9 million to the JEROME LEVY FOUNDATION, in New York, which is named for Mr. Levy's father, and $3.8 million to other institutions including PRINCETON UNIVERSITY and HARVARD UNIVERSITY in Cambridge, Mass.

RUTH PRICE THOMAS—a $40.4 million bequest to CORNELL UNIVERSITY, WELLS COLLEGE, and six nonprofit groups. Mrs. Thomas, who died last year at age 88, left approximately $20 million each to Cornell University, in Ithaca, N.Y., where the funds will endow the architecture department and its journal; and to Wells College, in Aurora, N.Y., where $1.25 million will expand a scholarship program she established for transfer students and older adults; and the remainder will be placed in the general endowment. She also left $100,000 each to the CAYUGA COUNTY COMMUNITY COLLEGE FOUNDATION and the AMERICAN RED CROSS OF CAYUGA COUNTY; and $50,000 each to the AMERICAN SOCIETY FOR THE PREVENTION OF CRUELTY TO ANIMALS, in New York; the CAYUGA COUNTY SPCA; the CAYUGA HEALTH ASSOCIATION'S MEALS-ON-WHEELS program; and the SCHWEINFURTH MEMORIAL ART CENTER, in Auburn, N.Y.

JOHN A. (JACK) JACKSON—two pledges totaling $40 million to UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS AT AUSTIN. Mr. Jackson, 88, who founded the Katie Petroleum Co., in Dallas, made two pledges to the University of Texas at Austin: $25 million to endow a new geosciences school and $15 million to help expand a geology building. Mr. Jackson contributed $5 million toward each pledge in 2001. He also gave $5 million to the Presbyterian Healthcare Foundation, in Dallas, and undisclosed sums to other nonprofit groups.


ROBERT MONDAVI AND MARGRIT BIEVER MONDAVI—a $35 million pledge to the UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA AT DAVIS. Of the total amount, $25 million will establish the Robert Mondavi Institute for Wine and Food Science at the University of California at Davis. Construction is expected to begin in 2004 on a building to house the institute. The remainder will help build a performing-arts center at the university that is expected to open in 2002. Mr. Mondavi, 88, founded the Robert Mondavi Winery, in Oakville, Calif., and Mrs. Mondavi is vice president of cultural affairs at the winery.

MICHAEL J. AND KATHERINE R. (KAY) BIRCK—a $30 million pledge to PURDUE UNIVERSITY, in West Layfayette, Ind. Mr. Birck, 64, is chairman of Tellabs, a telecommunications-equipment company in Naperville, Ill., and Mrs. Birck, 62, is head nurse at Women's Healthcare of Hinsdale. Their donation will help the university build a center for nanotechnology, which involves manipulating atoms and molecules to create minute equipment that can be used in computers, spacecraft, and medical devices. Construction is expected to begin this year.

LORRY I. LOKEY$25.8 million in pledges to SANTA CLARA UNIVERSITY and two other nonprofit groups. Mr. Lokey, 74, founded Business Wire, a news-distribution company in San Francisco. Last year he pledged $20 million to Santa Clara University, where he serves on the board of trustees, to endow undergraduate scholarships and to help replace the university's library and add to its resources through expanded access to electronic databases, documents, and publications, multimedia conferencing, and other new technologies. He paid $1 million of the total in 2001. He also pledged $5 million to the PENINSULA JEWISH COMMUNITY CENTER, in Belmont, Calif., and $750,000 to ALAMEDA ELEMENTARY SCHOOL, in Portland, Ore., of which he paid $50,000. He gave $2 million to Stanford University, in California, and $1 million to the Leo Baeck Education Center, in Haifa, Israel.

SAMUEL L. GINN$25.1 million in pledges to AUBURN UNIVERSITY and the YOSEMITE FUND. Mr. Ginn, 64, the retired chairman of Vodafone, a telecommunications company in Newbury, England, requested that a portion of his donation be used to create a program on wireless communication at the engineering school. He also requested that the engineering school raise $150 million from other sources for its endowment and for 25 professorships, although his gift was not contingent upon the school raising the additional funds. In 2001, Mr. Ginn also pledged $50,000 to the Yosemite Fund, in San Francisco, which raises money to benefit Yosemite National Park; he paid $12,500 of that amount.


STEPHEN A. AND DIANA L. GOLDBERG—a $25 million pledge to CHILDREN'S NATIONAL MEDICAL CENTER. A portion of the Goldbergs' donation will support the hospital's Community Pediatric Health Centers. The couple plans to earmark the remainder of their donation for specific purposes, but they have not yet decided where the money will go. Mr. Goldberg, 60, founded a real-estate development company in Washington that bears his name, and Mrs. Goldberg, 60, is chairman of the medical center's board of directors.

SAMUEL J. HEYMAN—a $25 million pledge to PARTNERSHIP FOR PUBLIC SERVICE. Mr. Heyman, 62, is the owner of Heyman Properties, in Westport, Conn., and chairman of International Specialty Products, a manufacturing company in Wayne, N.J. His pledge established the Partnership for Public Service, in Washington, which will seek to attract talented employees to government jobs by improving job-recruitment programs, advocating changes in federal hiring procedures, and encouraging others to give money to universities to help pay the loans of students who go on to work for the federal government.

JOHN T. LUPTON—a $25 million pledge to the UNIVERSITY OF TENNESSEE AT CHATTANOOGA. Mr. Lupton's pledge is unrestricted, and the university plans to use the funds to purchase equipment, to develop new academic programs, and to maintain campus facilities, among other uses. Mr. Lupton's family owned Coca-Cola bottling companies.

Joseph E. Jr and Jill Robert

JOSEPH E. JR. AND JILL ROBERT—a $25 million pledge to CHILDREN'S NATIONAL MEDICAL CENTER. The Roberts earmarked their pledge, part of the hospital's capital campaign, for a surgical-care center. Mr. Robert, a member of the hospital's board of directors, founded the J.E. Robert Cos., a real-estate investment and asset management company in McLean, Va. The Roberts also gave an undisclosed amount to other organizations including Fight for Children, a foundation Mr. Robert established 12 years ago that supports a variety of children's charities.