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Robert F. Smith, Oprah Winfrey, Michael Jordan, Frank Baker and William Pickard Top List of Black Donors to HBCUs  – Los Angeles Sentinel | Los Angeles Sentinel

Robert F. Smith, Oprah Winfrey, Michael Jordan, Frank Baker and William Picard Top list of black donors for HBCU

For decades, black leaders in business, entertainment, education and other fields have been the main sources of philanthropic donations to HBCU.

Billionaire philanthropist and writer Mackenzie Scott’s $ 560 million donation last year to 23 historic black colleges and universities (HBCU) made headlines across the country as racial equality became front-page news. However, for decades, black leaders in business, entertainment, education and other fields have been the main sources of philanthropic donations to HBCU.

A recent history of the Washington Post found that black Americans donated a higher share of their wealth than their white counterparts – about $ 11 billion each year. Given their cultural and educational significance to the black community, HBCUs are a repository of many of these donations to a number of household names – and some you may not know – make large contributions to these institutions.

Here are some of the most famous black philanthropists to donate to HBCUS:

Robert F. Smith – Chairman and CEO, Vista Equity Partners

Smith, a billionaire investor behind software private equity firm Vista Equity Partners, was widely praised in May 2019 when he announced that he and his family would pay off the entire debt for a 2019 student loan at Morehouse College graduating from 396 students. Along with paying off student debt, Smith’s $ 35 million donation also helped create the Student Success Program to reduce or eliminate debt for all Morehouse graduates. The private equity guru also gave the school an additional $ 1.5 million to create the Robert Frederick Smith Scholarship Program and build a park on campus.

As chairman of the board of the Student Freedom Initiative – A plan to provide STEM students at HBCU with a family-oriented alternative to income-dependent, high-cost, flat-rate payment – Smith promised $ 50 million. Smith’s donation has given impetus to the initiative, which hopes to raise $ 500 million for the effort, and began work in the fall of 2021 at eleven HBCUs.

“Every year, thousands of black HBCU alumni across America enter the workforce with a crushing debt that hampers future decisions and prevents opportunities and choices,” Smith said. “The initiative is purposefully designed to correct historical economic and social inequalities and offer a sustainable, scalable platform for investing in the education of future black leaders.

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Oprah Winfrey, TV personality, philanthropist, author, entrepreneur and actress

Most people may be familiar with Oprah’s philanthropic activities – which, like Beyonce, Prince and Zendaya, need no further introduction – through the infamous “You get a car!” Episode on her talk show, but is also quietly one of the biggest donors to HBCU in the country.

In 2019, Oprah donated $ 13 million to Morehouse College to celebrate the 30th anniversary of Oprah Winfrey’s scholarship program at HBCU. In total, Oprah has donated at least $ 25 million to the Atlanta school. “I felt it the first time I came here,” Said Oprah. “The money was a proposal to support these young men. I understand that African American men are an endangered species. They are so misunderstood. They are so marginalized. “

In addition to her gift to Morehouse, Oprah also donated $ 1.5 million to the United Negro College Fund to help pay scholarships for black students and general scholarship funds for 37 private HBCUs.

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Frank Baker – founder and managing partner of Siris Capital

Baker, founder of the private investment company Siris, along with his wife, interior designer Laura Day Baker, donated $ 1 million in May 2020 to set up a scholarship fund at Spelman College in Atlanta, the oldest private history college for liberal arts. of black women.

The scholarship initially paid the existing spring tuition balances to nearly 50 members of Spelman’s 2020 graduation, and the remaining funds are intended to ensure that future high-achieving graduates have the financial resources to complete.

“We are all aware of the headwinds facing people of color – especially women – in our country, whose challenges are becoming even more apparent than the economic and health impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.” the couple said in a press release. “We believe that it is extremely important for talented women to graduate from college and confidently enter – without unnecessary financial stress – in the early stages of their professional careers.

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William F. Picard – businessman, co-owner of Real Times Media

Detroit businessman and philanthropist Picard has a long history of donating to HBCU across the country. Most recently, Picard and his cousin, Cincinnati businessman Judson W. Picard Jr., donated $ 2 million to Morehouse College to create the Pickard Scholars program. This program will recruit and support black students from the Detroit, Flint, Greater Cincinnati, and Lagrange, Georgia subways to attend HBCU in Atlanta.

“People helped me grow and I believe in blessing others,” Picard, whose children attended Morehouse, told the Atlanta Tribune. “Our gifts are given to where we come from and to those who have invested in us and who we are.

The Picard Family Foundation also donated $ 100,000 to the National Blacks Association MBA to establish the William F. Picard Business Scholarship Fund. The fund is open to qualified members of business students at several HBCUs who need assistance to fund their education.

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Michael Jordan – former NBA superstar

Michael Jordan is perhaps the greatest basketball player of all time and is almost solely responsible for making the game a global phenomenon as it is today. So, if anyone knows how to influence HBCU, it would be His airiness.

The six-time NBA champion and five-time league MVP, along with Nike’s Jordan brand, donated $ 1 million last year to Morehouse College to strengthen its journalism and sports curriculum. The donation aims to support a program launched thanks to the donation of another icon, director Spike Lee.

“Education is crucial to understanding the black experience today.” Jordan said in a press release. “We want to help people understand the truth about our past and help tell stories that will shape our future.”

The donation to Morehouse is part of a promise made by Jordan and his 2020 brand to donate $ 100 million over the next ten years to combat racism throughout the country.

The following video link highlights the transformative financial contribution to HBCU of these African-American philanthropists: https://we.tl/t-EWOsZTmxVO

Dr. Benjamin F. Chavis Jr. is President and CEO of the National Association of Newspaper Publishers (NNPA) and is the executive producer / host of The Chavis Chronicles (TCC), a weekly television show on PBS in the United States. .

Robert F. Smith, Oprah Winfrey, Michael Jordan, Frank Baker and William Pickard Top List of Black Donors to HBCUs  – Los Angeles Sentinel | Los Angeles Sentinel Source link Robert F. Smith, Oprah Winfrey, Michael Jordan, Frank Baker and William Pickard Top List of Black Donors to HBCUs  – Los Angeles Sentinel | Los Angeles Sentinel

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