Announcing the 2015 Carnegie Medal of Philanthropy Honorees
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Carnegie Family of Institutions Pays Tribute to Andrew Carnegie’s Legacy of Philanthropy
August 25, 2015 – The eight recipients of the prestigious Carnegie Medal of Philanthropy were announced today by Carnegie Corporation of New York, on behalf of the international consortium of Carnegie institutions. Among the most charitable and visionary philanthropists in America, the recipients embody the spirit of giving set forth by Andrew Carnegie, each having had significant and lasting impact on a particular field, nation, or the international community. Medalists’ generosity has also influenced a wide range of issues, including education, the environment, cancer research, culture, the arts, science, citizenship, healthcare, and technology.
The 2015 Medal recipients are:
- Paul G. Allen, Microsoft co-founder and philanthropist
- Charles F. Feeney, founder of The Atlantic Philanthropies
- Jeremy and Hanne Grantham, leading environmental philanthropists
- The Haas Family, longtime Pennsylvania philanthropists
- Jon M. Huntsman, Sr., Utah philanthropist and founder of the Huntsman Cancer Institute
- Irwin and Joan Jacobs, prominent San Diego philanthropists
- Brothers Robert B. Menschel and Richard L. Menschel, two stalwart New York philanthropists
- David M. Rubenstein, celebrated culture and education philanthropist
The recipients of the 2015 Carnegie Medal will be honored on Thursday, October 15, 2015, at The New York Public Library during an invitation-only ceremony. The event will be hosted by Carnegie Corporation of New York; Judy Woodruff, Co-anchor and Managing Editor of the PBS NewsHour, will serve as master of ceremonies.
“Through the Carnegie Medal, the members of the Carnegie family of institutions seek to celebrate the importance of philanthropy in society and to honor the exemplary, longstanding commitment demonstrated by the recipients,” said Vartan Gregorian, President of Carnegie Corporation of New York. “These extraordinary individuals and families reflect and carry on the vision of philanthropy embodied in the ideals of Andrew Carnegie, who believed that the rich are trustees of their wealth and are under a moral obligation to reinvest it in society in ways that promote the progress of society.”
President Gregorian added, “It is heartening to see Americans’ sustained and growing engagement with philanthropy. Since the days of Mr. Carnegie and John D. Rockefeller, Americans’ collective charitable giving has risen immensely, to $358.38 billion annually in 2014.” [i]
The Carnegie Medal of Philanthropy was established in 2001 to mark the centennial of Andrew Carnegie’s retirement from business and the start of his career as a philanthropist, with the stated goal of doing “real and permanent good in this world.” Medalists are nominated by the more than 20 Carnegie organizations throughout the United States and Europe, and selected by a committee consisting of representatives from seven of those institutions.
This year’s Medal Selection Committee includes William Thomson CBE, great-grandson of Andrew Carnegie and former Chair and Honorary President of the Carnegie United Kingdom Trust, serving as the Medal Selection Committee’s Honorary Chair, and Carnegie Corporation President Vartan Gregorian serving as Chair. Other members are William J. Burns, President of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace; Clive Gillinson, Executive and Artistic Director of Carnegie Hall; Matthew Scott, President of the Carnegie Institution for Science; Subra Suresh, President of Carnegie Mellon University; and Andy Walker, Secretary and Treasurer of the Carnegie Trust for the Universities of Scotland. Carnegie Corporation of New York acts as secretariat for the Carnegie Medal.
Starting in 2015, the Carnegie Medal of Philanthropy will be awarded annually.
Past recipients of the Carnegie Medal of Philanthropy:
2013: Sir Tom Hunter, Her Highness Sheikha Moza bint Nasser, James and Marilyn Simons, the Wolfson Family, and Dmitry Zimin
2011: The Crown Family, the Danforth Family, Stanley and Fiona Druckenmiller, Li Ka-shing, Fred Kavli, the Lauder Family (Leonard and Evelyn Lauder, Ronald and Jo Carole Lauder), Pierre and Pamela Omidyar, the Pew Family, and the Pritzker Family
2009: Michael Bloomberg, the Koç Family, Gordon and Betty Moore, and Sanford and Joan Weill
2007: Eli Broad, the Heinz Family, the Mellon Family, and the Tata Family
2005: His Highness the Aga Khan, the Cadbury Family, Sir Tom Farmer, Agnes Gund, the Hewlett Family, and the Packard Family
2003: Kazuo Inamori and the Sainsbury Family
2001: Walter and Leonore Annenberg, Brooke Astor, Irene Diamond, the Gates Family, the Rockefeller Family, George Soros, and Ted Turner
2015 Carnegie Medal of Philanthropy Recipients
Paul G. Allen
Four decades after co-founding Microsoft, entrepreneur and philanthropist Paul G. Allen is still exploring the frontiers of technology and human knowledge, and working to change the future.
Through his company Vulcan Inc. and the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation, Mr. Allen is working to save endangered species, fight Ebola, research the human brain, support the arts, protect the oceans, and expand educational opportunities for girls. As a signer of The Giving Pledge, he has committed to giving away the majority of his fortune, and has already donated more than $2 billion to worthy causes around the world.
Charles F. Feeney
Charles “Chuck” Feeney was born in Elizabeth, New Jersey during the Great Depression. Following service in the U.S. Air Force, Feeney took advantage of the GI Bill to attend Cornell University. Upon graduation, he started a business that would eventually become Duty Free Shoppers, the world’s largest luxury goods retailer. He quietly transferred virtually all his assets to The Atlantic Philanthropies in the 1980s. Atlantic has since made more than $7 billion in grants to promote education, health, reconciliation, and human dignity throughout the world, and will make its last grants in 2016. Feeney’s Giving While Living philosophy has been credited by Bill Gates and Warren Buffett as inspiration for The Giving Pledge.
Jeremy and Hanne Grantham
Jeremy Grantham is co-founder and strategist at GMO, an investment management firm. His quarterly investment letter also covers financial ethics, deficiencies in capitalism, resource limitations, and problems posed by climate change. The Granthams have established foundations for the protection of the environment, emphasizing climate mitigation. Jeremy earned his undergraduate degree from the University of Sheffield (U.K.) and an M.B.A. from Harvard Business School, and holds three honorary degrees. He is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.
Hanne Grantham is presently co-chair of the Grantham Foundation for the Protection of the Environment, which she co-founded in 1998. She shares responsibilities in setting funding priorities and grant allocations. She is on the advisory boards of various organizations, including the WWF, Oxfam America, and Environmental Defense Fund, and she is on the joint Imperial College/London School of Economics Climate Committee. She received her undergraduate and master’s degrees from Brandeis, and an honorary doctorate from Imperial College. She has been a teacher of German language and literature at various levels. She lives in Boston with her husband, Jeremy, and they have three grown children.
The Haas Family
In 1945, German entrepreneur Otto Haas and his American wife, Phoebe, created what became the William Penn Foundation, dedicated to improving the quality of life in the Greater Philadelphia region. For over 70 years and four generations, Haas Family members have continued Otto and Phoebe’s philanthropic vision. Through the Foundation, the Haas Family is committed to fostering learning, protecting watersheds, and cultivating creative communities. The Family’s commitment to philanthropy also continues through other foundations created by family members, personal contributions, and commitments of time. As the family grows, each generation encourages the interests of the next, further expanding the impact of their efforts in service to the community.
Jon M. Huntsman, Sr.
Jon M. Huntsman, Sr., is Founder and Executive Chairman of Huntsman Corporation, a global manufacturer and marketer of specialty chemicals with more than 16,000 employees worldwide. Widely recognized as one of America’s foremost philanthropists, Mr. Huntsman focuses his giving on higher education, the rebuilding of Armenia after its devastating earthquake, homelessness, hunger, and abused women and children.
In 1993, he and his wife, Karen, founded the Huntsman Cancer Institute, the major focus of their giving, to accelerate the work of curing cancer through human genetics. The Institute is now one of America’s few comprehensive cancer centers, featuring leading-edge research laboratories, a hospital, outpatient clinics, an education center, and the world’s largest genetic database.
Irwin and Joan Jacobs
Joan Klein Jacobs was born in New York City and graduated from Barnard School for Girls and Cornell University. Trained as a dietician, she has worked for Groton Central Schools and Boston Lying-in Hospital. Since moving to La Jolla, California, in 1966, she has played an integral part in shaping the community through her activism and perseverance. She has served on numerous community groups, including support organizations at the University of California-San Diego, the Jewish Community Foundation, and City National Bank. She has also played a vital role in the San Diego arts community, with major contributions to La Jolla Playhouse, San Diego Symphony, and the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego, among others.
Irwin Mark Jacobs is Founding Chairman and CEO Emeritus of Qualcomm, which he co-founded in 1985 and led from startup to Fortune 500 Company. For pioneering CDMA wireless technology, Dr. Jacobs was awarded the National Medal of Technology in 1994 by President Clinton. Dr. Jacobs previously served as co-founder, CEO, and chairman of LINKABIT Corporation and as a professor at Massachusetts Institute of Technology and University of California San Diego. A longtime philanthropist, Dr. Jacobs has chaired the Board of Trustees of the Salk Institute since 2006, was chair of the National Academy of Engineering from 2008 to 2012, and has served on boards for UCSD Foundation, Cornell NYC Tech, and the Lang Lang International Music Foundation, among others.
Robert B. Menschel
Robert Menschel joined Goldman Sachs in 1954, establishing the Institutional Sales department, the first in the industry. He became a partner in 1968 and continues at Goldman Sachs as a Senior Director. Through Vital Projects, the foundation he started over 50 years ago, Mr. Menschel has been a major supporter of photography and has established galleries and/or programs at the Museum of Modern Art (where he was Chairman and President), The Metropolitan Museum of Art, and the National Gallery, among others. He is a Trustee and member of the Executive Committee of New York Presbyterian Hospital. Through Vital Projects, he is also one of the nation’s largest supporters of criminal and social justice reform.
Richard L. Menschel
Richard Menschel was raised in Manhattan and graduated from Syracuse University and Harvard Business School. He served as an officer in the Air Force. His career at Goldman Sachs began in 1959; he was a Partner and Management Committee Member when he retired and is now a Senior Director. He has been a trustee of the Hospital for Special Surgery since 1989, serving as its Chairman for 12 years. He is a vice president and trustee of The Morgan Library and Museum. He has given major financial support to Harvard University and was a Co-Chair of The University Campaign from 1994 to 1999. His philanthropy is directed largely through trusts he established, the Charina Foundation, and the Charina Endowment Fund.
David M. Rubenstein
David Rubenstein is a Co-Founder and Co-CEO of The Carlyle Group, founded in 1987. Mr. Rubenstein is Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and of Duke University, a Regent of the Smithsonian Institution, Co-Chairman of the Brookings Institution, Vice-Chairman of the Council on Foreign Relations, and President of the Economic Club of Washington. Mr. Rubenstein is on the Board of Directors of the University of Chicago, is a member of the Harvard Business School Board of Dean’s Advisors, and is Chairman of the Advisory Board of the School of Economics and Management at Tsinghua University.
About Andrew Carnegie
Born in 1835, Andrew Carnegie immigrated to the United States from Scotland and became a self-made millionaire. His 1889 essay, “The Gospel of Wealth,” helped establish Carnegie as a founding father of modern, strategic philanthropy. After selling his steel empire at the beginning of the 20th century, he devoted his life to philanthropic work. By the time of his death in 1919, he had given away some $350 million—nearly all of his fortune—to advance education, science, culture, and international peace, and to recognize the heroism of outstanding individuals.