Amazon founder and the world’s richest man Jeff Bezos made the largest charitable donation in 2020, according to an annual list of top donations in 2020.
Bezos had donated $10 billion to help fight climate change and it is the biggest donation recorded in 2020, according to The Chronicle of Philanthropy’s annual list of top donations in 2020. The 56-year-old, who has a net worth of roughly $188 billion, used the contribution to launch his Bezos Earth Fund.
The fund supports non-profits involved in the climate crisis and has paid out $790 million to 16 groups so far, as per the Chronicle of Philanthropy.
Meanwhile, the sum total of the top 10 donations in 2020 besides Bezos was just $2.6 billion, lowest since 2011. The lower amount of donation is in stark contrast in the manner which billionaires vastly increased their wealth this year due to the stock market rally, especially in technology shares.
Bezos’ wealth has also surged sharply this year. Data suggests that Bezos’ wealth has surged over 60 per cent in 2020 from March 18 to December 7.
Bezos’ donation was followed by Phil Knight and his wife. The couple made the second and third largest donations in 2020, according to the Chronicle of Philanthropy. Knight increased his wealth by a staggering 77 per cent over the same March-to-December period.
Knight and his wife gave more than $900 million to the Knight Foundation and $300 million to the University of Oregon.
Fred Kummer, the founder of construction company HBE Corporation and his wife, June, gave $300 million to establish a foundation to support programs at the Missouri University of Science and Technology.
Meanwhile, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg and his wife Priscilla Chan delivered the fourth largest donation on the Chronicle’s list. It was a $250 million donation to the Center for Tech and Civic Life, which worked on voting security issues in the 2020 election. It may be noted that Zuckerberg’s wealth doubled to $105 billion in the March-to-December period.