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Joanne Fritz

Giving Pledge Picks Up 12 More Billionaires

By April 22, 2012

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Last week, 12 more billionaires signed on to the Giving Pledge, the Warren Buffett/Bill and Melinda Gates campaign to enlist the wealthiest of the wealthy in philanthropy.

The Giving Pledge, established in 2010, now has 81 billionaires on its honor role, all of whom have committed to give away to charity at least 50% of their wealth during their lifetimes or at death.

The new members range from 40-year-old Elon Musk of Tesla Motors to 83-year-old Edgar M. Bronfman, of the Seagram empire. Several of the new Pledge signers represent tech wealth, such as Michael Moritz, who helped finance Google, Yahoo and PayPal; and John Sall, co-founder of software giant SAS.

All of the new members of the Pledge already engage in significant philanthropy, so the Pledge is not exactly out of their comfort zone. The Pledge doesn't tell its members how to use their money for charity, but rather makes their intentions public and concrete. Each member writes a letter about his or her philanthropic philosophy, which is then posted on the Giving Pledge website.

Does the Giving Pledge matter? Can philanthrocapitalism really make a difference in the world? How does the Giving Pledge look today in light of growing income inequality, and movements such as Occupy Wall Street?

Source: 12 more billionaires sign on to Buffett/Gates Pledge - Fortune

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