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What just happened? MacKenzie Scott is a relative newcomer on the list of the world’s wealthiest individuals but she is having no problem parting with her money. Scott said she asked a team of advisors to help her accelerate her 2020 giving. They took a data-driven approach to help identify organizations with strong leadership teams that could benefit from additional support.
In early 2019, Scott acquired roughly a quarter of the joint Amazon stock that she and former husband Jeff Bezos had amassed since founding Amazon in the mid-90s through their divorce agreement.
In May 2019, she signed the Giving Pledge, vowing to give at least half of her fortune to charity. She’s making good on that promise in 2020.
By July, she had already given $1.7 billion to various charities and causes but that pales in comparison to the nearly $4.2 billion she has given over the last four months alone. The exact amount, $4,158,500,000, was dispersed as gifts to 384 different organizations across all 50 states, Washington D.C. and Puerto Rico.
Some are filling basic needs: food banks, emergency relief funds, and support services for those most vulnerable. Others are addressing long-term systemic inequities that have been deepened by the crisis: debt relief, employment training, credit and financial services for under-resourced communities, education for historically marginalized and underserved people, civil rights advocacy groups, and legal defense funds that take on institutional discrimination.
From 6,490 prospective leads, the team narrowed the list down to just 822 organizations and ultimately chose to help 384 groups. The other 438 are still up for consideration, with Scott describing them as “on hold” for now.
The full list of organizations that received donations in this latest round can be found over on Medium.