Washington, December 16: MacKenzie Scott, philanthropist, author and former wife of Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, has announced that she has given away $4.1 billion in the past four months to hundreds of organizations as part of a giving pledge she announced last year.
Scott announced her pandemic-era philanthropy in a Medium post Tuesday, The Seattle Times reported. She described the coronavirus pandemic as “a wrecking ball in the lives of Americans already struggling,” and noted is has been worse for women, people of color and those living in poverty.
Recipients include more than 30 institutions of higher education, including several tribal colleges and historically Black colleges and universities. More than 40 food banks received money, as did almost four dozen local affiliates of Goodwill Industries International.
After donating $1.68 billion to 116 nonprofits, universities, community development groups and legal organizations last July, Scott asked a team of advisers to help her “accelerate” her 2020 giving with immediate help to those financially gutted by the pandemic.
MacKenzie Scott, the world’s 18th-richest person outlined the latest contributions in a blog post Tuesday, saying she asked her team to figure out how to give away her fortune faster.
She said the team used a data-driven approach, identifying organizations with strong leadership and results, specifically in communities with high food insecurity, racial inequity and poverty rates, “and low access to philanthropic capital.”