The 2007 Slate 60: Donations
The largest American charitable contributions of the year.
Updated Monday, Feb. 11, 2008, at 7:35 AM
Barron Hilton—$1.2 billion to the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation. Hilton, the co-chairman of Hilton Hotels Corp. until the sale of the company in 2007, is also chairman of the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation that was started by his father. The foundation focuses its giving on long-term projects in developing countries and on poverty-related issues in the United States.
Jon and Karen Huntsman—$627 million to medical and higher education organizations. This year, the Huntsmans gave $600 million to the family's Salt Lake City-based Huntsman Cancer Foundation. Huntsman, who made his fortune in the chemicals industry, says he plans to double his contribution to the foundation in the next five to 10 years. The Huntsmans also gave $1 million to the Utah Department of Health for an HPV campaign, $25 million to the Utah State University's business school, and $1 million for a scholarship fund for USU students from Armenia. This is the Huntsmans' fourth appearance on the Slate 60.
George Soros—$474.6 million to the Open Society Institute and the Soros Humanitarian Foundation. $238.6 million was given to the Open Society Institute, which aims to promote democratic governments through projects ranging from support for independent media to education reform. He also gave $230 million to the Soros Humanitarian Foundation and $6 million to the Iris Foundation, which recognizes excellence in the decorative arts. This marks the seventh time Soros has appeared in the Slate 60.
T. Denny Sanford—$431 million to medical causes, primarily in the field of pediatrics, as well as cultural and academic organizations. $400 million will go to the Sioux Valley Hospitals and Health System, the largest gift ever to a health organization. Sanford, the CEO of United National Corporation, First Premier Bank, and Premier Bankcard Inc., is making his third appearance on the Slate 60.
John Kluge—$400 million to Columbia University to support financial-aid programs from undergraduate and graduate students. John Kluge's Metromedia owned a variety of television and radio station before being acquired by 20th Century Fox and News Corp.
Sanford I. (Sandy) Jr. and Joan H. Weill—$328.5 million to various medical, scientific, artistic, and educational organizations. Weill, the former chairman of Citigroup, and his wife, Joan, made major contributions to the capital campaign of Weill Cornell Medical College (which was renamed in the Weills' honor following their 1998 endowment) as well as Cornell University's New Life Sciences Initiative. The Weills also made donations to Carnegie Hall, the Alvin Ailey Dance Theatre, New York Presbyterian Hospital, and the National Academy Foundation, which Weill founded in 1982.
Michael Bloomberg—$205 million to 1,100 different organizations. Bloomberg, the mayor of New York City and the founder of Bloomberg LP, a financial-data and news-service business, makes his fifth appearance on the Slate 60 with his largest sum yet. The total represents Bloomberg's personal giving, his shares of his company's donations, and his foundation giving.
Boone Pickens—$200 million to a variety of philanthropies. Pickens, the founder of Mesa Petroleum and BP Capital, gave $156 million contribution the T. Boone Pickens Foundation. Other recipients include Big Brothers Big Sisters of America and Oklahoma State University. Pickens is most famous for navigating his oil company, Mesa Petroleum, through a series of acquisitions and hostile takeovers during the '80s. The $200 million represents Pickens' largest total of his four Slate 60 appearances.
Robert A. Day—$200 million to Claremont McKenna College to establish the Robert Day Scholars program, which will create an enhanced curriculum and state-of-the-art facilities, all focused on finance and accounting. Day is the founder of Trust Company of the West, an investment management firm.
John and Tashia Morgridge—$179 million, primarily to educational causes. Cisco Chairman John Morgridg met his wife, Tashia, while in high school in Wisconsin, and both attended the University of Wisconsin. They have long supported educational programs in their home state. This year, they made a founding gift of $175 million to establish the Fund for Wisconsin Scholars, which will provide grants for low-income graduates of Wisconsin public schools attending Wisconsin public post-secondary schools. The Morgridges also gave $4 million toward the building of a public pool facility in Milwaukee County.
Eli and Edythe Broad—$176 million to the Broad Foundations, which support public education programs, contemporary art museums, and scientific and medical research. This year, the Broads made major gifts to Michigan State University, for the building of a new art museum, and to UCLA, to fund adult and embryonic stem cell research. Los Angeles-based billionaire Eli Broad, who founded KB Home and SunAmerica Inc., a financial-services company, and his wife, Edythe, are appearing on the Slate 60 for the ninth time.
Barbara Dodd Anderson—$128.5 million to her alma mater, the George School, a co-ed Quaker prep school in Bucks County, Pa. Anderson's gift is one of the largest single donations ever made to a secondary school in the United States. The money will go toward student financial aid, faculty and staff compensation, and advances in environmental sustainability. Anderson's father was an early investor in Warren Buffet's company, Berkshire Hathaway. (He was one of Buffet's business school professors at Columbia.) This is her first time on the Slate 60.
David H. Koch—$123 million, including a $100 million gift to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology to be used for cancer research. Koch is a board member of Koch Industries, which includes organizations ranging from chemical research and refinement firms to financial services companies.
Lorry Lokey—$112.5 million to various universities. Lokey, the founder and chairman of the media relations company Business Wire, has made five previous appearances on the Slate 60. This year, he gave $74.5 million to the University of Oregon; the bulk of the gift will go toward the Lorry I. Lokey Science Advancement and Graduate Education Initiative. $33 million went toward building a home for Stanford's Institute for Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine. Lokey also gave $5 million to Santa Clara University, for a new library complex, and $1.5 million Portland State University, to endow a chair in Judaic studies.
Thomas M. Siebel—$100 million to the University of Illinois that will be used to expand science and engineering programs at the school. Thomas Siebel was the founder of Siebel Systems, a technology company that developed consumer management software. The company was purchased by Oracle in 2005.
Ann Lurie—$100 million to the Children's Memorial Hospital in Chicago. The gift will be used to establish a new campus in the Streeterville community of Chicago. Lurie is the president of Lurie Investments, a venture capital firm that focuses its investments in the biomedical community.
Alex Joseph is a Slate intern.
Juliet Lapidos is a former Slate associate editor.
Nina Shen Rastogi is a writer and editor, and is also the vice president for content at Figment.
Jon Rubin is a Slate intern.
Chris Wilson is a Slate contributor.
Photographs of: Leona Helmsley by Paul Hawthorne/Getty Images, Sandy Weill by Koichi Kamoshida/Getty Images, Oprah Winfrey by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images, Phil Knight by Henny Ray Abrams/AFP, Lawrence Ellison by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images.