Vartan Gregorian to Join the Hunter Foundation ("Thf") Board As £100M Commitment Confimed

Vartan Gregorian, president of Carnegie Corporation of New York, the grant-making institution founded by Andrew Carnegie in 1911 is to join The Hunter Foundation board, the venture philanthropy set up by Tom and Marion Hunter in Scotland.

His involvement in philanthropy is extensive having served on the boards of the J. Paul Getty Trust, the Aga Khan University, and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Currently Gregorian serves on the boards of the Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton, Human Rights Watch and the Museum of Modern Art.

Commenting on his appointment THF chairman, Tom Hunter noted:

"Vartan is probably one of the most influential thinkers of this era in relation to philanthropy and the impact of education. His appointment will enable our Trustees, and I believe Scotland, to benefit from an incredible network of contacts, programmes and leading edge thinking that we can apply for the common good here in Scotland.

"His appointment marks a major milestone in the development of THF as we seek to build a venture philanthropy that aims to make a sustained impact upon Scotland and indeed perhaps beyond."

Vartan Gregorian, who recently chaired the panel to select the design for the World Trade Centre Memorial, commented:

"Like his fellow Scotsman Andrew Carnegie, Tom Hunter believes that private wealth should be used as a force for the public good. I look forward to working with Tom and his wife as they strengthen their philanthropic commitment and create a vision for a foundation that will be a force for this century in Scotland and elsewhere."

Hunter and Gregorian met initially after Hunter had sold his first business, Sports Division and was analysing the most effective means of establishing a venture philanthropy in Scotland. The relationship has continued with Gregorian on an ongoing basis.

The Hunter Foundation also today confirmed that its founder and chairman, Tom Hunter had committed £100 million to support the ongoing development of the venture philanthropy’s programmes.

The funds will be drawn down as and when necessary based upon the decisions of THF Trustees and will be applied to education and enterprise programmes that are capable of being scaled for national impact.

For further information please contact Ewan Hunter on 07803 904769.


Vartan Gregorian: for more information on Vartan Gregorian please visit


Prior to his current position, which he assumed in June 1997, Gregorian served for nine years as the sixteenth president of Brown University. For eight years (1981-1989), Gregorian served as a president of the New York Public Library, an institution with a network of four research libraries and eighty-three circulating libraries.

Gregorian is the author of Emergence of Modern Afghanistan, 1880-1946, Islam: A Mosaic Not a Monolith, and his autobiography The Road to Home. A Phi Beta Kappa and a Ford Foundation Foreign Area Training Fellow, he is a recipient of numerous fellowships, including those from the John Simon Guggenheim Foundation, the American Council of Learned Societies, the Social Science Research Council and the American Philosophical Society. He is a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts of Sciences, and the American Philosophical Society. In 1969, he received the Danforth Foundation's E.H. Harbison Distinguished Teaching Award.

His numerous civic and academic honors include some fifty honorary degrees, including those from Brown, Dartmouth, Drew, Johns Hopkins, University of Pennsylvania, the Jewish Theological Seminary, the City University of New York, Rutgers, Tufts, New York University, University of Aberdeen, and, most recently, The Juilliard School, and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

In 1986, Gregorian was awarded the Ellis Island Medal of Honor and in 1989 the American Academy of the Institute of Arts and Letters' Gold Medal for Service to the Arts. In 1998, President Clinton awarded him the National Humanities Medal.


THF was formed in 1998, known then as the TBH Charitable Trust, changing its name last year to THF. The venture philanthropy was formed with initial capital of £ 10m from retail entrepreneur, Tom Hunter and his wife Marion.

Subsequently THF has invested some £ 13.5m to date into national enterprise and educational programmes aimed at offering 'opportunity for all'. Its Board of Trustees include Tom and Marion Hunter, Jim McMahon and corporate lawyer, Robert Glennie. THF is run by chief executive, Ewan Hunter (no relation to Tom and Marion). For further information please go to