Mark Zuckerberg and his wife Priscilla Chan have announced they will give away 99% of their shares in Facebook – some $45 billion at the company’s current value – over the course of their lives.
Their pledge has drawn praise from other high-profile donors, including US media billionaire Michael Bloomberg and Melinda Gates, who established the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation with her husband Bill Gates, the Microsoft founder.
These quotes from some of the world’s most famous philanthropists show that billion-dollar generosity is alive and well.
Michael Bloomberg: “Mark’s decision shows that when it comes to philanthropy, 30 is the new 70. The only question now is: how many of his peers in Silicon Valley and beyond will join him?”
Mark Zuckerberg: “Our society has an obligation to invest now to improve the lives of all those coming into this world, not just those already here.”
Bill Gates: “Is the rich world aware of how 4 billion of the 6 billion live? If we were aware, we would want to help out, we’d want to get involved.”
Melinda Gates: “Philanthropy is not about the money. It’s about using whatever resources you have at your fingertips and applying them to improving the world.”
Richard Branson: “As I grew older it seemed that I was not making a big enough difference, particularly given my own incredible good fortune. I went from feeling content that things were going well, to realizing that I hadn’t even begun to scratch the surface of what needed to be done.”
Andrew Carnegie: “Wealth is not to feed our egos, but to feed the hungry and to help people help themselves.”
Paul Allen: “You look at things you enjoy in your life, but much more important is what you can do to make the world a better place.”
Sara Blakely: “I pledge to invest in women because I believe it offers one of the greatest returns on investment. While many of the world’s natural resources are being depleted, one is waiting to be unleashed – women.”
Judith Faulkner: “My goal in pledging 99% of my assets to philanthropy is to help others with roots – food, warmth, shelter, healthcare, education – so they too can have wings.”
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Author: Joe Myers is a Digital Content Producer at Formative Content.
Image: Berkshire Hathaway CEO Warren Buffett talks to reporters prior to the Berkshire annual meeting in Omaha, Nebraska May 2, 2015. REUTERS/Rick Wilking
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The views expressed in this article are those of the author alone and not the World Economic Forum.