Tech UPTechnologyNervousness in philanthropy world over Gates divorce

Nervousness in philanthropy world over Gates divorce

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is the largest of its kind on the planet, with a $ 50 billion endowment. The couple announced their separation on May 3.

Bill and Melinda Gates were in the back of a truck, they were on the mainland for the first time. The goal was to see animals, nature and talk about their priorities as a couple, as they would soon get married. But what they saw led to a larger conversation about the enormous fortune they had already begun to accumulate.

“It was the first time we really saw extreme poverty,” Melinda said in a speech in Abu Dhabi in 2016. It was “the beginning of our education on the challenges faced by the world’s poorest people.”

It was also the beginning of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the philanthropic behemoth the couple built over the course of their 27-year marriage, which ended this week. In the note in which they announced their separation, they said that they would continue to run the foundation together.

Also read: Bill and Melinda Gates separate after 27 years of marriage

Despite this guarantee, the news of the divorce caused a stir in the world of philanthropy.

The commitment to give

In 2010, the Gates, whose fortune is now worth about $ 145 billion , signed the ‘Giving Pledge’, a promise they jointly created to convince the richest people in the world to donate the majority of their wealth in their lifetime or by will. They themselves would offer “the vast majority of our assets to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.” It remains to be seen how that money will be distributed in the wake of their announced divorce.

The promise is not legally binding, and Bill and Melinda have already explored other forms of pay, addressing climate change and gender inequality, respectively, through their own investment firms. Your individual giving could expand now that there are two very high net worth households instead of one, said Elizabeth Dale, associate professor of nonprofit leadership at Seattle University.

Today’s Economic News: What is the National Unemployment Committee asking for and how economically viable is it?

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is no ordinary family philanthropy; It is the largest of its kind on the planet. With more than 1,600 employees and offices around the world, it is endowed with $ 50 billion and has already distributed more than $ 50 billion since its inception to causes such as vaccine development and women’s empowerment. It competes with large countries for their support, contributing more resources to research and development to combat malaria, tuberculosis and other diseases. It also has its ties to Wall Street.

Follow the news of El Espectador on Google News

The foundation trust distributes tens of millions of dollars in commissions each year to investment managers and financial services companies. Some of the largest recipients revealed in the trust’s most recent tax return include Marathon Asset Management, Wright Management, State Street Corporation, and Green Court Capital Management, who received more than $ 7 million in commissions.

You may be interested: Mintic explains what happened to connectivity in Colombia this week

Any change in Bill or Melinda’s stake in the foundation would have a major impact due to the unusual size of their board of directors. Bill and Melinda represent two-thirds of the trustees of the foundation. The third member is his friend Warren Buffett, who has contributed more than $ 27 billion of his own money to the foundation’s coffers in the last 15 years.

The Ford Foundation, which is about one-fifth the size of the Gates Foundation, has 15 members on its board of directors. The Rockefeller Foundation, one-tenth the size, is no less than 12 at a time. And unlike those organizations, your living donors can influence your priorities and operations, said Greg Witkowski, senior professor of nonprofit management at Columbia University.

Dale and Witkowski agree that their separation will not immediately affect the foundation or grants that have already been promised, but could affect their future depending on how the couple’s approach to philanthropy evolves with the divorce.

Division of assets

How the Gates’ fortune is divided could determine which causes attract the most attention. His complicated holdings have already begun to unravel, with more than $ 2 billion transferred to Melinda this week alone. The majority is approximately 14.1 million shares in Canadian National Railway Co.

For now, the foundation projects an image of calm.

Carla Sandine, a spokeswoman for PATH, a nonprofit organization and a major donor to the Gates Foundation, said they have heard the same as everyone else, that nothing is going to change.

“I think we have to trust that,” Sandine said. Seattle-based PATH has received more than $ 2.2 billion from the Gates Foundation.

The fact that the divorce of two people has caused so much nervousness and uncertainty in the nonprofit world highlights problems with the modern model of philanthropy, said Erica Foldy, associate professor of public and nonprofit management at the School. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service from New York University.

“What some people decide to do has a massive impact on the health and well-being of millions or even billions of people,” said Foldy.

Sandine agrees that it is frustrating that the world depends on the generosity of people to solve its problems.

“I think that the fact that we say that the future of global public health depends on the relationship between two people reflects a greater problem ,” said Sandine. “Public health around the world is not adequately funded, so Bill and Melinda Gates have been filling massive gaps.”

Bill Gates introduces new plan to save the world

Bill Gates wants to make the world a better place. To this end, he has presented solutions for climate protection in his new book. Among other things, he suggests that rich states should only eat synthetic meat.

Glasgow's green hypocrisy: private jets jam on arrival of 'eco-card millionaires'

The green hypocrisy of Glasgow: traffic jam of 400 private jets as the millionaires 'green cards' arrive at the climate change summit

Bill Gates gives the keys to fight the next pandemic

Bill Gates talks about what the next pandemic will look like and gives the keys to fight it.

Bill Gates and Jeff Bezos: Billionaires Invest in Raw Material Search in Greenland

In Greenland, important metals for electric cars are said to be available in large quantities. A project by two companies could threaten the arctic ecosystem.

The 5 books that Bill Gates recommends reading for the summer of 2021

Discover which are the books that Bill Gates recommends reading for the summer of 2021, all of them inspired by the feelings with the pandemic.