The 2005 Slate 60: Donations

Analysis of the year's biggest philanthropists.
Feb. 20 2006 8:19 AM

The 2005 Slate 60: Donations

The 60 largest American charitable contributions of the year.

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David and Cheryl Duffield—$95 million to Maddie's Fund. David Duffield, 65, founder of the PeopleSoft software company and his wife, Cheryl, gave $93 million to Maddie's Fund, an animal-welfare foundation in Alameda, Calif., that they started in 1999. All of the most recent gift will go to the foundation's endowment, which will now total $293 million and will be used for grants to groups that promote the well-being of dogs, cats, and other animals, as well as to support groups that spay and neuter pets, and to veterinary colleges that maintain animal-shelter programs. The couple gave an additional $2 million to arts organizations, education and community groups, and environmental charities in Northern California and Nevada.

Josephine F. Ford—$90.9 million to the College for Creative Studies, the Detroit Institute of Arts, and the Maine Coast Heritage Trust. Ford, an heir to the Ford Motor Company fortunte who died June 1, 2005, at 81, bequeathed $50 million to the College for Creative Studies in Detroit for its endowment, the earnings of which will be used for financial aid for students and to increase the number of full-time faculty members. A portion of the earnings will also go toward programs at the college. Ford, the only granddaughter of company founder Henry Ford, also left $20 million to the Detroit Institute of Arts to go toward an endowment, museum operations, and a new building. In addition to the cash gift, Ford left the museum a collection of artworks and antique furniture worth a total of $14.7 million, according to the lawyer handling her estate. The works include Pablo Picasso's Girl Reading,valued at $7 million, Amedeo Modigliani's Filette a la Blouse Blanche, worth $2.5 million, and Henri Matisse's Anemones and Peach Blossoms, valued at $2.3 million, as well as works by Edgar Degas and Pierre-Auguste Renoir. Ford, whose family summered on the coast of Maine near Mount Desert and Acadia National Park, left $3.5 million to the Maine Coast Heritage Trust in Topsham. The gift is unrestricted, but officials at the trust said that they plan to use it for conservation and management of the trust's properties, the purchase of land, and its operating endowment. In addition to those bequests, Ford left smaller gifts totaling $2.6 million to those same groups, as well as to the Detroit Historical Society and other nonprofit organizations.

T. Denny Sanford—$70.6 million to Sioux Valley Hospital, and the Mayo Foundation. Sanford, 70, CEO of United National Corporation, First Premier Bank, and Premier Bankcard in Sioux Falls, S.D., donated $20 million to Sioux Valley Hospital in Sioux Falls for expansion projects at the University of South Dakota's medical school. The hospital, which is the primary teaching facility associated with the medical school, gave the university $4 million last year and will continue to give it $2 million a year for the next eight years. Sanford says he channeled the money for the university through the hospital because he was happy with the way Sioux Valley dealt with his previous gift. In 2005, Sanford gave Sioux Valley Hospital $14 million, the final payment on a $16 million pledge he made in 2004 to help the institution build the Sanford Children's Hospital, scheduled to open in 2009. Sanford also gave $15 million to the Mayo Foundation in Rochester, Minn. Most of the donation—$10 million—will pay for a new pediatric outpatient center at the Mayo Clinic. The remaining $5 million will establish an endowment to support joint research and education programs run by the clinic and Sanford Children's Hospital in Sioux Falls. Sanford also awarded $21.6 million to child-welfare, community, and health charities.

Robert Edward (Ted) Turner

Robert Edward (Ted) Turner—$67.6 million, plus $3 million in pledges, to the Better World Fund, the United Nations Foundation, the Nuclear Threat Initiative, the Turner Foundation, and the Peace Parks Foundation. Turner, 67, founder of CNN and TBS and chairman of Turner Enterprises, gave $53 million worth of Time Warner stock to the U.N. Foundation and the Better World Fund, both in Washington. (Turner established the Better World Fund to inform the public about the work of the United Nations.) He also gave $12.4 million in a combination of cash and Time Warner stock to the Turner Foundation in Atlanta, which he created in 1990 to support environmental and population projects. Turner pledged $4 million to the Nuclear Threat Initiative in Washington and paid $1 million of the pledge in 2005. The rest of the money will be paid out annually in $1 million increments over the next three years. Additionally, Turner donated $1 million worth of Time Warner stock to the Peace Parks Foundation in Stellenbosch, South Africa, and gave $200,000 worth of the stock to several educational institutions that he declined to name.

Peter B. Lewis—$59.9 million to Princeton University and the American Civil Liberties Union Foundation. Lewis, 72, chairman of the Progressive Corporation, an insurance company in Mayfield Village, Ohio, gave $21 million to Princeton University in New Jersey for creative and performing-arts programs. He also donated $6.5 million to the American Civil Liberties Union Foundation in New York, toward past pledges. Lewis gave the largest portion of the gift—$4 million—for upkeep of the building that houses the organization's offices in Washington, while $2 million is for the group's endowment and $550,000 is for a drug-policy project. Lewis gave an additional $32.4 million to numerous advocacy, arts, education, civic, health, human rights, and social-services causes. He also pledged $250,000 to the Boys & Girls Clubs of Cleveland.

Ted and Vada Stanley—$54.4 million to the Stanley Medical Research Institute; Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory; NARSAD, Mental Health Research Association; the Theodore and Vada Stanley Foundation, and the Treatment Advocacy Center. Stanley, 74, founder and chairman of BMI, a Norwalk, Conn., company that develops and markets collectible items, and his wife, Vada, 72, gave $28.4 million to the Stanley Medical Research Institute in Bethesda, Md., which they helped create in 1989. With assets worth $274 million, the institute focuses on researching treatments for schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. The Stanleys also donated $5 million to NASRAD, the Mental Health Research Association, in Great Neck, N.Y.; $5 million to Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory in New York for genetic research; and $4 million to the Theodore and Vada Stanley Foundation  in Norwalk, Conn. The foundation's assets total $4 million, and it supports mental-health and crisis-relief charities. The Stanleys started their foundation in 1985, but were not sure where they wanted to focus their philanthropy. The couple found a mission several years later when their son, Jonathan, became mentally ill while he was in college and was eventually diagnosed with bipolar disorder. The Stanleys also gave a total of $10.4 million to more than 70 nonprofit organizations in 2005, including AmeriCares, the Boys & Girls Clubs of America, CARE, the Carter Center, the International Rescue Committee, Trickle Up, and other human-rights and relief groups.

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John B. Ellis—$52 million to the Arizona Community Foundation. Ellis, who died in July at age 90, left most of his estate—$52 million—to the Arizona Community Foundation in Phoenix, to establish a supporting organization, the Ellis Center for Educational Excellence, which will advocate long-term improvements in Arizona's public schools. Before Ellis' death, foundation officials expressed eagerness to create a center to tackle Arizona's troubled public-education system and described how that might be done. Ellis, who usually gave the foundation $250,000 to $500,000 each year, liked the idea, but never told anyone at the foundation how much he intended to give. His wealth came from more than 100 shares of General Electric stock that he kept for decades after the sale of the Browning Gun Company in the 1940s to Utah Construction, which was eventually bought by GE in 1974.

Oprah Winfrey

Oprah Winfrey—$51.8 million to the Oprah Winfrey Foundation, Oprah's Angel Network, and the Oprah Winfrey Operating Foundation. Winfrey, 52, chairman of Harpo, a multimedia entertainment company, and host of The Oprah Winfrey Show, donated $35.9 million to the Oprah Winfrey Foundation in Chicago, which supports education as well as programs for women and children in the United States and abroad. She also gave $11 million to the Oprah Winfrey Operating Foundation in Chicago. Winfrey's operating foundation supports a leadership academy for girls in South Africa that is scheduled to open in January 2007. Winfrey gave an additional $3.5 million—profits from the sale of the 20th-anniversary DVD collection of her television show—to Oprah's Angel Network, a nonprofit organization Winfrey established in 1998 to encourage her fans and other celebrities to donate to charity. Winfrey subsidizes the organization's administration costs so she can assure donors that all their money goes to charitable causes selected by her foundation. Winfrey donated an additional $1.3 million in 2005 to other nonprofit groups.

Helen Snell Cheel—$49.3 million to Clarkson University, Canton-Potsdam Hospital, and the Emma Willard School. Cheel, who died in March 2005 at 100, left $27 million to Clarkson University, in Potsdam, N.Y. A portion of the bequest—$16 million—will go toward the university's endowment, and the remaining $11 million will pay off previous pledges Cheel made to a student center, a hockey arena, and an academic building. Members of Cheel's family attended Clarkson, and although she was not an alumna, she was a diehard hockey fan, attending many of university's home games. University officials said she made it a point to tell Clarkson's president when she thought the hockey team was underperforming. She also bequeathed $16.5 million to the Emma Willard School, a private girls school in Troy, N.Y., where Ms. Cheel was a student from 1920 to 1923. Most of the money is unrestricted and will be used for the school's endowment, but Cheel stipulated that some of it be used for technology—she paid to wire the campus for Internet use in 1995—and arts programs. Cheel also left $5.7 million to Canton-Potsdam Hospital in New York, where her mother was a board member in the 1920s. The bequest is unrestricted and will be used for the hospital's endowment.

Paul G. Allen—$49 million to the Allen Institute for Brain Science the Smithsonian Institution, the Paul G. Allen Foundation, the Experience Music Project, and the Science Fiction Museum. Allen, 53, founder and chairman of Vulcan, an investment company in Seattle, and co-founder of Microsoft, gave $16.5 million to the Allen Institute for Brain Science in Seattle. He also donated SpaceShipOne, the first privately built spacecraft to enter suborbital space, to the Smithsonian Institution for its National Air and Space Museum in Washington. Allen spent approximately $25 million to develop the spacecraft. (Because of the way the spacecraft was developed, the donation is not technically counted as a charitable contribution by the IRS, but because it has been turned over to the museum, the Chronicle of Philanthropy counted this donation toward Allen's philanthropy.) Allen gave $6.5 million to the Experience Music Project and the Science Fiction Museum in Seattle, and $1 million to the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation in Seattle. The money to the family foundation was used to provide a $500,000 grant to the American Red Cross for Hurricane Katrina relief, and other grants totaling $500,000 to Gulf Coast charities that will help rebuild hurricane-damaged regions.

Lorry I. Lokey—$46.2 million to Santa Clara University, Stanford University, Mills College, the San Francisco Jewish Community Endowment Fund, and the University of Oregon. Lokey, 79, founder and chairman of Business Wire, a San Francisco company that distributes press releases, gave $10 million to Santa Clara University in California as a final payment on a $20 million pledge he made in 2001 to finance a new university library. Part of the gift—$10,000—is earmarked to help students who are transferring to Santa Clara because their own institutions were damaged by Hurricane Katrina. Lokey made similar $10,000 gifts to aid Katrina-affected students at Stanford University (his alma mater) as well as to Mills College, in Oakland, Calif., and to the University of Oregon. His gave $10 million to Stanford as a final payment on a $20 million pledge made in 2000 for a research building housing the chemistry and biology departments. Lokey gave a total of $8 million to Mills College, the final installment on a $10 million pledge made in 2004 to establish a graduate business school to prepare women for entrepreneurial careers. He gave $7.8 million worth of Business Wire stock to the San Francisco Jewish Community Endowment Fund. The stock will be liquidated in March 2006, when Lokey completes his sale of Business Wire to Berkshire Hathaway. The University of Oregon in Eugene received a total of $6.6 million from Lokey for a new music department building and for a new journalism department building for the Portland campus. He also made gifts totaling $3.7 million to nonprofit organizations in California, Oregon, Washington state, and in Israel. Those donations were given to creative and performing-arts groups, education and human-services charities, Jewish groups, and elementary and secondary schools.

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