The 60 largest American charitable contributions of the year.

Analysis of the year's biggest philanthropists.
Feb. 15 2007 11:26 PM

The 2006 Slate 60: Donations

The 60 largest American charitable contributions of the year.

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Eli and Edythe L. Broad—$137.6 million to the Broad Foundations. Broad, 73, founding chairman of KB Home Corporation and of SunAmerica, a financial-services company in Los Angeles, and his wife Edythe, 70, gave $137.6 million to the Broad Foundations in Los Angeles, which support local civic programs, efforts to improve elementary and secondary public education, medical and scientific research, and contemporary-art museums. In 2006 the foundation made a $25 million grant to the Broad Institute for Integrative Biology and Stem Cell Research at the Keck School of Medicine at the University of Southern California, a $10.5 million grant to Green Dot Public Schools to establish 21 small high schools in Los Angeles, an $8.9 million grant to the Broad Fellows Program in Brain Circuitry at the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, and a $6 million grant to the Los Angeles Opera to help sponsor the company's production of Richard Wagner's Der Ring des Nibelungen.

Joseph Neubauer—$114.6 million to the Neubauer Family Foundation and the Fund for Eakins' Masterpiece. Nubauer, 65, CEO of Aramark—a Philadelphia company that runs concession stands, provides food for dormitories and nursing homes, and supplies worker uniforms—gave $74.4 million in Aramark stock to the Neubauer Family Foundation in December. He declined to give further details about the gift, which comprised 2.2 million shares. Under Neubauer's leadership, Aramark has twice made the transition from a public to a private company. It went private in 1984 and returned to the New York Stock Exchange in 2001. Last year  Neubauer and other investors began buying back millions of shares. He transferred a portion of those shares, valued at $33.80 apiece, to nonprofit groups. According to company financial documents, Neubauer also donated 1.1 million Aramark shares, worth $37.2 million, to two charities that were not named. In recent years, the Neubauer foundation has granted money to numerous Philadelphia arts groups, including $10 million to help the Barnes Foundation finance a controversial move from outer Philadelphia to a downtown location. According to its founder's wishes, the Barnes collection of paintings and sculptures was to remain at its original home, a mansion, in perpetuity. Neubauer has publicly supported the move. In addition,  Neubauer paid $3 million to the Fund for Eakins' Masterpiece, which prevented a Philadelphia icon—The Gross Clinic, a Thomas Eakins painting valued at $68 million—from being bought jointly by the National Gallery of Art in Washington and the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville, Ark.

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John Arrillaga—$100 million to Stanford University. Arillaga, 69 and co-founder of Peery/Arrillaga, a commercial real-estate company in Santa Clara, Calif., gave $100 million to Stanford University for academic programs. A 1960 Stanford graduate, Arrillaga has given to the university previously and has been described as "the patron saint of Stanford athletics." Several university buildings bear his name, including the alumni center and sports center. The university declined to provide a figure for his total giving through the years.

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Henry M. and Wendy J. Paulson

Henry M. and Wendy J. Paulson—$100 million to the Bobolink Foundation and the Goldman Sachs Philanthropy Fund. Paulson, 60, the treasury secretary and a former chairman of Goldman Sachs in New York, and his wife, Wendy, 59, gave 510,000 shares of Goldman Sachs stock, worth approximately $80 million, to the Bobolink Foundation in Chicago, which the couple established in 1985. The money will be used for grants to education, environmental, and conservation groups. The Paulsons also gave 127,500 shares of Goldman Sachs stock worth about $20 million to the Goldman Sachs Philanthropy Fund, a donor-advised fund. The Paulsons declined to disclose how the money would be used.

Tim and Bernadette Marquez—$85 million to the Denver Foundation and the Marquez Foundation. Marquez, 48, chief executive of Venoco, a Denver oil company, and Bernadette Marquez, also 48, a nurse, gave 2.5 million shares of Venoco stock, worth $42.5 million, to the Denver Foundation and that same amount of Venoco stock to establish the Marquez Foundation. The gift to the Denver Foundation established the Denver Scholarship Foundation, which will help graduates of Denver's public schools attend college. The Marquez Foundation will focus its support on education and health care. Tim Marquez attended Denver public schools, and the couple hopes to help alleviate barriers for public-school graduates who want to go to college. The third of six children, Tim Marquez is the son of two public-school teachers. He worked his way through college at the Colorado School of Mines in Golden by taking jobs at several local factories.

Gary C. and Frances Comer—$67 million to the University of Chicago and the Comer Science and Education Foundation. Gary Comer, who died in October at age 78, and his wife, Frances, gave $42 million to the University of Chicago to establish a pediatric-care center. Gary Comer founded Lands' End, a retail clothing company in Dodgeville, Wis., and sold the company to Sears, Roebuck and Company in 2002 for $1.9 billion. The money will also be used for programs in pediatric medicine and to help support efforts to recruit physicians and scientists. The Comers donated the money nine months before Gary Comer died. The couple gave the university $21 million in 2001 to build Comer Children's Hospital. The new pediatric-care facility, which the university plans to name for the Comers, is being built next to the children's hospital. In addition, the Comers donated $25 million to the Comer Science and Education Foundation in Chicago. Gary Comer started the foundation in 1998 to support efforts to improve science education and to help support Paul Revere Elementary School and its surrounding neighborhood. He attended the school, on Chicago's South Side, as a child. Before he died, Gary Comer stipulated that the $25 million gift to the foundation should support two causes he cared most about: the Revere school and finding ways to fight global warming. He became interested in global warming in the summer of 2001 when he was sailing through the Northwest Passage, the sea route that winds through the Canadian Arctic. The passage usually has heavy patches of ice even in the summer. As he wended through the passage, Comer noticed something strange: His boat never touched a single piece of ice during the 19-day trip. Alarmed, he contacted a few scientists who specialize in climate change. He didn't like what he learned: Abrupt climate change was escalating. Comer quickly decided he wanted to help finance research on the subject, and his private foundation added a new grant-making program to provide research grants to scientists. To date, the foundation has spent $25 billion supporting climate-change research, according to Bill Schleicher, a foundation spokesman.

Pierre and Pam Omidyar—$66.7 million to the Omidyar Network. Pierre Omidyar, 39 and the founder of eBay, and his wife, Pam, also 39 and chairwoman of HopeLab, a Palo Alto, Calif., organization that develops technology to help chronically ill children, gave $62.7 million to the nonprofit branch of the Omidyar Network, in Redwood City, Calif. The couple created the network in 2004 to take over the operations of their foundation. One arm of the network gives money to nonprofit organizations, while the other branch is a for-profit unit that invests in businesses that promote social change. The Omidyars spent about $18 million on the for-profit branch. The money given to the nonprofit arm will be used for grants to 57 nonprofit groups, including the Boulder Institute of Microfinance in Colorado, Common Sense Media in San Francisco, DonorsChoose in New York, the Grameen Foundation in Washington, and Youth Noise in San Francisco. The Omidyars also gave $4 million to HopeLab and other nonprofit groups.

Oprah Winfrey
Oprah Winfrey

Oprah Winfrey—$58.3 million to the Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy Foundation and Oprah's Angel Network. Winfrey, 53, chairwoman of Harpo, a multimedia entertainment company in Chicago, and host of The Oprah Winfrey Show, donated $50 million to the Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy Foundation, in Chicago. The money will be used to pay construction costs and operating costs of the Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls South Africa, in Henley-on-Klip, South Africa. During a 2000 visit with Nelson Mandela, Winfrey pledged $10 million to establish a school for needy girls in South Africa. Construction crews broke ground for the 38-building campus in 2002, and the academy opened in January. The private academy is designed to serve grades 7 through 12 and integrates leadership education into a rounded liberal-arts curriculum in an effort to help women prepare to take leadership roles in South Africa. In addition, Winfrey gave $5.9 million to Oprah's Angel Network in Chicago, for operating costs. She established the nonprofit organization in 1998 to encourage other celebrities and her fans to donate to charity. She pays the organization's administration costs so that all of the money donated from others can go to charitable causes. Winfrey donated an additional $2.4 million to other nonprofit groups.

Wallace D. Malone Jr.—$55.9 million to the Malone Family Foundation. Malone, 70, founder of the SouthTrust Corporation, which was purchased by Wachovia in 2004, started the Malone Family Foundation in 2006 with 1 million shares of Wachovia stock acquired in a buyout agreement in April. The stock was worth approximately $56 million in mid-April and has reached values up to $60 million in the past year. The foundation, in Malone's hometown of Dothan, Ala., will give three-quarters of its grants to schools and colleges in Florida, where Malone lives; in Alabama, where he attended school; and in Georgia. His motivation, he said, "is pretty simple: If you want to raise the standard of living of people, you've got to raise the level of education." He has not decided what other causes the foundation will support. Malone said he will make grants to educational institutions at all levels but will focus on students in elementary and high school, because, he said, "If you lose them there, forget the university." He had given small amounts to educational causes before, but he put off starting a foundation until last April, when he retired and had time to manage one. The Malone Foundation will begin making grants this winter.

Thomas M. Siebel—$55.8 million to the Thomas and Stacey Siebel Foundation, the Meth Project Foundation, Stanford University, Palo Alto Medical Foundation, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and the National Center for Equine Facilitated Therapy. Siebel, 54, chairman of First Virtual Group, a holding company in Palo Alto, Calif., and founder of Siebel Systems, a software company in San Mateo, Calif., that merged with the Oracle Corporation last year, gave Oracle Corporation stock worth $39.7 million to the Thomas and Stacey Siebel Foundation, in Palo Alto, Calif. Thomas Siebel established the foundation with his wife, Stacey, in 1996. The foundation supports education, youth, and conservation groups, as well as organizations that prevent drug abuse and help homeless people. Thomas Siebel also gave $5 million to the Meth Project Foundation to support the Montana Meth Project in Missoula, an organization he founded to help fight methamphetamine use. He also gave approximately $3 million to Stanford University in California for upkeep of the university's golf-practice facilities; $2 million to the Palo Alto Medical Foundation in California to expand a medical facility; $2 million to the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign for a professorship in the history of science; and $1.9 million to the National Center for Equine Facilitated Therapy in Woodside, Calif., for a new facility and operating costs. He also gave $1.7 million to the Siebel Scholars Foundation, in Palo Alto, Calif., and $500,000 to the Salvation Army in Alexandria, Va., to pay for food and shelter for homeless people in New York and Palm Desert, Calif.

Frederic N. and Eleanor H. Schwartz—$53.5 million to Syracuse University and Brown University. Frederic Schwartz, who died in 1995 at age 88, and Eleanor Schwartz, who died last June at 98, left two gifts of $26.5 million each, one to Syracuse University in New York for student financial aid and the other to Brown University, in Providence, R.I., for scholarships for female students. Frederic Schwartz,the formerchairman of Bristol-Myers Co., a pharmaceutical company in New York, graduated from Syracuse in 1931; Eleanor Schwartz attended Pembroke College, Brown's women's college, which merged with the university's undergraduate program in 1971. In the mid-1960s, the Schwartzes established a trust for the two universities with 2,900 shares of stock in Bristol-Myers. The Schwartzes made nominal gifts annually to both institutions for many years. Their estate also left an additional $500,000 to Syracuse, which was rolled into the scholarship fund that the larger gift established.

Paul Allen
Paul Allen

Paul G. Allen—$52.8 million to the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation, the Experience Music Project, the Science Fiction Museum, and the New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science. Allen, 54, founder of Vulcan, an investment company in Seattle, and co-founder of Microsoft, in Redmond, Wash., gave $37.5 million to the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation in Seattle. The money will be used primarily to support arts and culture groups and social-service programs for needy people. He also gave $14 million to the Experience Music Project and the Science Fiction Museum, both in Seattle. Allen established the Experience Music Project, a museum dedicated to rock 'n' roll music, in 2000 and created the Science Fiction Museum, which is housed in the same facility as the music museum, in 2003. In addition, he gave $1.3 million to the New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science in Albuquerque for the Startup Gallery, a permanent exhibit that traces the history of the microcomputer and is focused on the ways in which it changed how people live and work. Allen came up with the idea for the gallery and chose Albuquerque as its location as a way to honor the city where he and Bill Gates first started Microsoft.