Slate 60 List Celebrates Leading Philanthropists
Hoteliers Helmsley and Hilton Top Magazine's Annual List of Biggest Charitable Givers
WASHINGTON, February 11, 2008—Slate, the daily online magazine, today launches its annual Slate 60 list of the top American philanthropists. The late hotelier Leona Helmsley tops the list with the donation of her $4 billion estate to the Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust, with William Barron Hilton, of Hilton Hotels, as the second top donor, pledging $1.2 billion to the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation. Both Helmsley and Hilton are new to the Slate 60 list, each opting to leave their fortunes to charity rather than family.
Other notable names on the list, compiled using data from the Center on Philanthropy at Indiana University's Million Dollar List, include #42 Oprah Winfrey, who donated $50.2 million to the Oprah Winfrey Foundation and Oprah Angel Network. Yahoo! co-founder Jerry Yang and his wife Akiko Yamazaki are #27, pledging $75 million toward the development of a new environmental studies center at Stanford University. Donating $400 million to Columbia University for use toward scholarship is telecommunications entrepreneur and Columbia University alum John W. Kluge, who is #6. The full list, including donors from years past, can be found as a searchable database at www.slate.com/slate60/2008.
"In its twelfth year, the Slate 60 list—which this year presents over $6.7 billion in charitable giving from the first 5 donors alone—is evidence of an explosive recent growth in philanthropy. Acknowledging this level of generosity is inspiring and enforces the importance of giving at any amount," said Jacob Weisberg, Slate's editor.
The Slate 60 ranks American donors who have made public pledges and donations during the year. The minimum donation to qualify for the 2007 list is $30 million.
"Each year, we look forward to presenting the Slate 60. Unlike other rankings of powerful or wealthy Americans, the Slate 60 pays tribute to those who have made altruistic choices," said Cliff Sloan, publisher of Slate.
For more information, visit www.slate.com/slate60/2008.
About The Slate 60
The Slate 60 is Slate Magazine's annual list and analysis of the 60 Americans who have given the most to charity. It attempts to fuse two essential but conflicting aspects of the American character: generosity and competitiveness. In 1996, Slate editor Michael Kinsley was struck by remarks Ted Turner made in an interview with Maureen Dowd: The CNN founder bemoaned the influence of the Forbes 400 list of richest Americans, saying it discouraged the wealthy from giving away their money for fear of slipping down the rankings. Turner suggested that a list of charitable contributions could inspire rich Americans to compete in a more beneficial way. Kinsley thought such a list would be an important contribution to American journalism and civic life, and launched the list in 1996, Slate's first year in existence. At the first Slate 60 Conference honoring philanthropy in 2006, Mayor of New York Michael Bloomberg compared the Slate 60 list to other popular ranking lists and said, "I'm in much better company being in the Slate 60." The Slate 60 list is compiled by Slate reporters and editors using data from the Center on Philanthropy at Indiana University's Million Dollar List. The Slate 60 list for 2006 is available at www.slate.com/slate60/2007. Highlights from last year's Conference are available at http://www.slate.com/2007slate60conference/.
Slate (http://www.slate.com/) is a daily online magazine that offers fresh angles on stories in the news and innovative entertainment coverage, all with their signature wit and irreverence. Pushing the boundaries of convention, Slate publishes provocative commentary on topics such as politics, culture, business and technology. Slate is owned by Washingtonpost.Newsweek Interactive, the online publishing subsidiary of The Washington Post Company (NYSE: WPO).
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