The Giving Pledge, launched by Warren Buffett and Bill and Melinda Gates in 2010, is an effort to help address society's most pressing problems by inviting the world's wealthiest individuals and families to commit the majority of their assets to philanthropic causes. So far, 114 high-net-worth households have joined the pledge, making public declarations that are shared on the Giving Pledge web site.
With a combined net worth of roughly $504 billion1, the commitments made by the current participants could bring more than $252 billion to charity. Given the dramatic increase this could represent to philanthropy over time, Glasspockets is keeping an Eye on the Giving Pledge, providing an in-depth picture of the participants and their publicly known charitable activities.
Tom Steyer and Kat Taylor he a hedge fund billionaire turned heavy-hitter Democratic donor live in San Francisco's outer Pacific Heights. They are one of the city's great philanthropic couples, but eschew the social scene in favor of pushing for social change, whether it's for a better environment or helping the disadvantaged.
Read more at San Francisco Chronicle»
Mark Zuckerberg's recent gift of $500 million to the Silicon Valley Community Foundation has people talking about the the Millenial generation and the long-term effect of their philanthropy. As the co-founder of Facebook said, when joining the Giving Pledge in 2010, "People wait until late in their careers to give back. But why wait when there is so much to be done?" In an article on the Huffington Post, the Foundation Center's social media manager, Jereme Bivins, sees Zuckerberg's decision as a rallying cry that may well change the face of philanthropy.
Read more at Huffington Post»
In 2008, as Wall Street seemed to crumble and investors headed for the doors, Warren Buffett was still actively investing billions of his own money. Buffett is equally famous for his announcement that he plans to give the bulk of his fortune (now some $46 billion) to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and, in 2010, launching the Giving Pledge in partnership with the Gateses. In Alice Schroeder's 2008 biography of Buffett we learn about the fearlessness and focus that transformed a modest, plainspoken Nebraska boy into the Oracle of Omaha, a global cultural icon, and one of the world's leading philanthropists.
Read more at PND»
Learn about the Giving Pledge and its potential.
Subscribe to our Essential Reading feed
For your reader: Get the feed»
Philanthropy News Digest has been covering the Giving Pledge since the campaign's inception. Read the latest news or explore the PND archive.
Subscribe to PND on the Giving Pledge
For your reader: Get the feed»
Recurring themes in Giving Pledge commitment letters
Meet the New Pledgers
On May 7, 2013, the Giving Pledge added nine participants to its ranks, including American and international pledgers, as well as the first female individual billionaire.
"Eye on the Giving Pledge" maintains profiles for all 114 participants. Each profile details the pledger's net worth, primary industry affiliation, giving interests, related foundations, charitable board service, and philanthropic press coverage.
«To view the profile of a new pledger, select an image at left.
|100 Giving Pledge households||5 households||1 household||no households|
Giving Pledge participants from outside the United States represent slightly less than 12 percent of the total net worth of all pledgers. With the highest concentration of participants outside the United States, the United Kingdom's six Giving Pledge households have a combined net worth of $10 billion.
While the interests of Giving Pledge participants in health, human services, education, and arts & culture mirror the findings of the Giving USA 2012 Annual Report on Philanthropy, pledgers also show an interest in a diverse range of other areas.
The age distribution of the Giving Pledge participants continues to strongly favors those born before World War II. The median age of participants is 76 years (David Rockefeller at 97 is the oldest, while Cari Tuna is the youngest at 28).
A deeper look at the industries represented by the Giving Pledge participants revealed strong showings of high-net-worth individuals from financial and high-tech, but also great diversity in the types of businesses participants pursued and the origin of their wealth. Outside the United States the mining and high-tech industries play a larger role as a source of wealth.