17 More Families Join Giving Pledge and Commit Majority of Wealth to Philanthropy

Global group now includes 154 philanthropic individuals and families from 16 countries

SEATTLEJune 1, 2016 — Today the Giving Pledge announced the addition of 17 new individuals and families to the pledge since June 2015, bringing the current total of signatories to 154 from 16 countries. The Giving Pledge is a multi-generational, global initiative created by Warren Buffett and Bill and Melinda Gates that encourages billionaires to give the majority of their wealth to philanthropic causes.

The 17 new signatories announced today are:

  • Margaret and Sylvan Adams (Israel)
  • HRH Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Bin Abdulaziz AlSaud (Saudi Arabia)
  • Lynne and Marc Benioff (United States)
  • Nathan and Elizabeth Blecharczyk (United States)
  • Brian Chesky (United States)
  • Scott Cook and Signe Ostby (United States)
  • Jack and Laura Dangermond (United States)
  • Henry Engelhardt, CBE and Diane Briere de l'Isle-Engelhardt, OBE (United Kingdom)
  • Joe Gebbia (United States)
  • Sir Tom and Lady Marion Hunter (United Kingdom)
  • Robert and Arlene Kogod (United States)
  • Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw (India)
  • PNC and Sobha Menon (UAE)
  • Gary K. Michelson, M.D. (United States)
  • Gensheng Niu (China)
  • Liz Simons and Mark Heising (United States)
  • Dr. Herbert and Nicole Wertheim (United States)

"This new group joining the Giving Pledge is incredibly thoughtful about their desire to give back and help solve the world's toughest challenges through philanthropy," said Bill Gates, co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. "Some have been giving for decades and others are just starting out after building successful businesses, but they all see the value of giving in a bold and effective way. Melinda, Warren and I are glad to have the opportunity to learn with them and from them."

The new additions to the Giving Pledge include entrepreneurs and business leaders from a diverse set of backgrounds and sectors, including technology, medicine and biotech, real estate, and dairy farming. They will use their philanthropic resources to support a range of causes, including poverty alleviation, healthcare, education, and environmental protection.

Giving Pledge signatories convened this week at the group's annual two-day learning conference, which provides them with the opportunity to hear from outside experts and learn from each other about how to give effectively across a range of issues. Topics discussed at this year's annual gathering included leveraging philanthropy to drive women's opportunities in the global economy, opportunities and challenges for giving internationally, solving environmental issues, engaging in urban renewal projects, and philanthropy's role in advancing scientific discovery.

About the Giving Pledge

The Giving Pledge is a global effort to help address society's most pressing problems by encouraging the wealthiest families to give the majority of their wealth to philanthropic causes.

The 154 pledgers range in age from 30 to 100. Globally, signatories represent 16 countries: Australia, Brazil, China (mainland and Taiwan), Germany, India, Indonesia, Israel, Malaysia, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Turkey, Ukraine, UAE, United Kingdom, and United States. In the United States, they are from 26 states and the District of Columbia, with the largest contingents from California and New York. Over the long-term, the Giving Pledge hopes to help shift the social norms of philanthropy toward giving more, giving sooner and giving smarter.

Pledge signatories come together throughout the year to discuss challenges, successes and failures, as well as how to be smarter about giving. The Giving Pledge does not involve direct appeals, pooling money, or requirements to support a particular cause or organization.

Although the Giving Pledge is specifically focused on billionaires, it is inspired by past and present efforts that encourage and recognize givers of all financial means and backgrounds. The inspiration is the example set by millions of people who give generously – and often at great personal sacrifice – to make the world a better place.

For the full list of pledgers and personal letters by many of these pledgers outlining their commitment to give, visit www.givingpledge.org.

Biographies of New Pledgers

Margaret and Sylvan Adams, Israel

Sylvan Adams, formerly the CEO and shareholder of Iberville Developments, a property development and administration enterprise based in Montreal, Canada, with over 100 projects in several Canadian Provinces and US States. Sylvan is also an accomplished competitive road and track cyclist at the Master's level, with (as of 2015) 15 Quebec Provincial titles, 6 Canadian National championship titles, 4 Pan American championship titles, 4 Maccabiah Games (Jewish Olympic Games) victories, and two World Champion's titles. Margaret and Sylvan are the proud parents of four accomplished adult children: Dr. Sarah (married to Paul Joseph Lukac), Rachel (married to Alex Rincon), Naomi, and Joshua Adams.

Excerpt from Giving Pledge letter:

"I grew up in a philanthropic home, where my parents were generous givers early on, when they didn't have great means; their donations only escalated as my father's business activities and wealth grew. From my parents' example, it was natural for me to continue the family tradition of trying to do some good in the world around me."

HRH Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Bin Abdulaziz AlSaud, Saudi Arabia

HRH Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Bin Abdulaziz AlSaud is one of the world's most successful businessmen. Over four decades, he has built up his business interests from his home country of Saudi Arabia into a global network and trusted partner of many of the world's leading companies.

He founded Alwaleed Philanthropies in 1980 to help build a more peaceful, equitable and sustainable world for generations to come. The foundation's priority areas include empowering women and youth, developing communities, creating cultural understanding and providing disaster relief.

Working with a range of partners, the foundation has initiated and supported thousands of projects in over 120 countries.

Lynne and Marc Benioff, United States

Marc is chairman and CEO of Salesforce, a company he founded in 1999. A pioneer of cloud computing, Benioff founded the company in 1999 with a vision to create a new kind of enterprise software company, with a new technology model based in the cloud, a new pay-as-you-go business model and a new integrated corporate philanthropy model. Under Marc's leadership, Salesforce has grown from a groundbreaking idea into a Fortune 500 company, the fastest-growing top ten software company in the world and the largest customer relationship management (CRM) company. Through Salesforce's innovative 1-1-1 model of philanthropy, the company and its philanthropic entities have provided more than $120 million in grants, dedicated 1.4 million hours of volunteer time throughout the world and powered more than 28,000 nonprofits with Salesforce technology.

Lynne is an independent marketing consultant and philanthropist. In 2015, Lynne was appointed to the Board of Directors of the Presidio Trust by President Barack Obama. Lynne is also on the Board of Directors of Hampton Creek, the Board of Overseers of the University of California San Francisco Foundation, the Board of Directors of UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital Oakland and the Board of Directors of Common Sense Media. Since 2010, Marc and Lynne have given $250 million to University of California at San Francisco, building UCSF Benioff Children's Hospitals in both San Francisco and Oakland.

Excerpt from Giving Pledge letter:

"We believe that in order for our communities to thrive, it's imperative that all children have access to world-class healthcare and education systems. Our country is experiencing growing income inequality—disproportionately affecting the outcomes of our nation's youth. We know that if children do not have the appropriate healthcare and education opportunities by age 5, they will remain at a disadvantage for the rest of their lives. These are the issues that motivate us to fund high-impact projects that help advance the health and education of our nation's children."

Nathan and Elizabeth Blecharczyk, United States

Dr. Elizabeth Morey Blecharczyk is a Clinical Instructor in Pediatrics at Lucile Packard Children's Hospital at Stanford. She works in the department of Neonatal & Developmental Medicine as a Neonatal Hospitalist. Elizabeth received her BA from Wellesley College and her medical degree from Tufts University School of Medicine. She completed her pediatric residency and then a chief residency at Stanford University. She is a fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics, and a member of the Academic Pediatric Association and the Society of Hospital Medicine. Elizabeth currently sits on the Board of Advisors at Tufts University School of Medicine and the Board of Trustees at Newton Country Day School of the Sacred Heart. She lives in San Francisco with her husband and daughter.

Nathan Blecharczyk is the co-founder and CTO at Airbnb, a trusted community marketplace that connects people with unique accommodations in more than 34,000 cities and 191 countries. Nathan oversaw the creation of Airbnb's engineering, data science, and performance marketing teams and currently plays a leading role in the company's business and product strategy. He became an entrepreneur early on, running a business while he was in high school that sold to clients in more than 20 countries. He earned a degree in Computer Science from Harvard University and held several engineering positions before co-founding Airbnb. As a guest Nathan has stayed in hundreds of homes using Airbnb and he is also a host in San Francisco, where he lives with his family.

Excerpt from Giving Pledge letter:

"We are humbled to find ourselves at a young age in an extremely privileged place. We recognize that the world has many real challenges and that we are in a unique position to have significant positive impact. We feel a responsibility to share our good fortune, and we pledge to dedicate the majority of our wealth over time to philanthropy."

Brian Chesky, United States

Brian is the co-founder and CEO at Airbnb. He drives the company's vision, strategy and growth as it provides interesting and unique ways for people to travel and changes the lives of its community. Under Brian's leadership, Airbnb stands at the forefront of the travel industry, and has expanded to over 2,000,000 listings in 191 countries. Brian met co-founder Joe Gebbia at the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) where he received a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Industrial Design.

Excerpt from Giving Pledge letter:

"There is a saying that a great trip can set you down a path that doesn't end when you return. With this pledge, I want to help more kids realize the kind of journey I have had. I want to show them that their dreams are not bounded by what they can see in front of them. Their limits are not so limited. Walt Disney once said, "If you can dream it, you can do it." I would like to help them dream."

Scott Cook and Signe Ostby, United States

Scott Cook grew up in LA and started his career at P&G. He met Signe Ostby when seeking advice from other brands. Their subsequent marriage 36 years ago "insourced" an unlimited supply of advice. While at Bain & Co, Scott started a software project that grew into Quicken, and Intuit was born 33 years ago. VCs refused to invest... Scott was a whisker away from failing twice. Things eventually improved. Scott ran Intuit for 11 years, then promoted more talented leaders to be CEO...whose curse is the founder who won't go away. He serves on the boards of Procter & Gamble, Intuit, and Harvard Business School. He is thankful for carbon fiber bikes and parabolic skis, and enjoys strange travel…recently to North Korea, Cuba, and soon Iran.

Signe Ostby grew up in Madison, Wisconsin. She started her career at Procter & Gamble and then was "dragged" out to the West Coast by new husband, where she managed new products for the Clorox Company. Having decided that personal computers might be more than just hobby toys, Signe joined a start-up software company in 1982 and ran marketing and customer support until kids came along. She developed a high tech marketing consulting business while producing 3 terrific kids.

Signe serves on the boards of Environmental Defense Fund and the Center for Brand and Product Management at UW – Madison. Signe is currently restoring a ranch using holistic grazing practices. In her "free" time, she enjoys playing bridge, knitting, planning gardens, and riding the trails of Woodside.

Scott and Signe live in Woodside, CA and have three kids in their 20s.

Excerpt from Giving Pledge letter:

"Today's opportunities for social progress are larger than ever before in history. We are lucky to live in a renaissance of entrepreneurship across the fields of human endeavor, and we believe that social entrepreneurs will drive progress on the great challenges of our time."

Jack and Laura Dangermond, United States

Jack and Laura Dangermond founded Esri in 1969 with a vision that maps and geographic science could promote deeper understanding of our world and enable us to create a better future. That vision has continued to guide Esri in creating GIS and Geodesign technologies that are used in every industry and are making a difference worldwide. Esri is widely recognized as the technical and market leader in GIS, pioneering innovative solutions for working with spatial data.

They have millions of users in over 350,000 organizations representing government; nongovernmental organizations (NGOs); academia; and industries such as utilities, health care, transportation, telecommunications, homeland security, retail, and agriculture. Jack and Laura are personally committed to applying GIS methods for environmental stewardship and sustainable communities.

Henry Engelhardt, CBE and Diane Briere de l'Isle-Engelhardt, OBE, Wales, United Kingdom
Henry Engelhardt, CBE

Henry recently retired as Chief Executive of Admiral Group plc., one of the most successful of all the car insurance and price comparison firms in the UK, now with operations in Spain, Italy, France and the USA. In mid-1991 Henry was recruited to create and run what has become Admiral Group. At the end of 2015 Admiral had more than 4m policyholders and 8,000 employees worldwide. Turnover in 2015 was more than £2 billion with profits of £377m. Admiral is a FTSE 100 company with current value around £5.5 billion. Admiral has also won many awards in its history and is the only firm to be included in the Sunday Times Best Companies to Work For list all 16 years that list has been compiled and for the last three years Henry won the Best Leader Award for Big Companies. In 2010 Henry and his wife Diane created the Moondance Foundation to further their philanthropic ambitions. An American from Chicago, Henry holds an MBA from Insead, Fountainebleau, France as well as a BA from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI. Henry is happily married with four (suddenly grown-up) children and lives in Cardiff, Wales.

Diane Briere de l'Isle-Engelhardt, OBE

Diane spends most of her time with the family's charitable foundation, Moondance. She feels very privileged to be in a position to make a difference for causes that she is passionate about. Diane, is French, born and raised in Paris. She graduated from Paris V law school, going on to pass the French and New York state bar exams. She practiced law in Chicago and Paris before moving to the UK with her husband, Henry, where she dedicated her time to raising their four children. Diane and Henry live in Cardiff, Wales. In 2013 Diane created a company, Resolve It, to help vulnerable people stay safe. Resolve It offers the Urban Survival Tool Kit which teaches awareness, avoidance, conflict resolution and self-defense skills. Diane's primary philanthropic interests revolve around women and children's rights and safety.

Excerpt from Giving Pledge letter:

"In business and in our personal lives, we have followed 2 main principles: we believe in everyone's right to have a chance at happiness and we believe that the power of a team is invariably stronger than the power of any single individual. We try to apply these principles to our philanthropic endeavours and that is why we think the Giving Pledge is such a fantastic idea. We hope that through the Giving Pledge we can send a message of philanthropy that many people will hear and, hopefully, encourage others to follow."

Joe Gebbia, United States

Joe Gebbia is the co-founder and CPO of Airbnb, serving on the Board of Directors and Executive staff. An entrepreneur from an early age, Airbnb's groundbreaking service began in his San Francisco apartment and spread to 2,000,000 listings in over 191 countries, creating a new economy for thousands of people around the world. He is involved in crafting the company culture, shaping the design aesthetic, and innovating future growth opportunities. Joe has spoken globally about both entrepreneurship and design, and received numerous distinctions such as the Inc 30 under 30 and Fortune 40 under 40. His lifelong appreciation for art and design led him to the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD), where he earned dual degrees in Graphic Design and Industrial Design. Joe now serves on the institution's Board of Trustees.

Excerpt from Giving Pledge letter:

"I want to devote my resources to bring the moment of instantiation, when someone who has an idea sees it become real, to as many people as I can. It can unlock the understanding that they can make things happen, that they can shape the world around them. I want to enable as many people as possible, especially in underprivileged communities, to experience this magic firsthand."

Sir Tom and Lady Marion Hunter, United Kingdom
Sir Tom Hunter

Tom's first business, started from the back of a van, grew to become Europe's largest independent sports retailer, Sports Division. He sold the business in 1998 for £290m going on to establish his private equity business, West Coast Capital (WCC), and philanthropy, The Hunter Foundation (THF).

WCC invests in brands, property, ecommerce and big data analytics. With his wife, Marion, THF has invested in excess of £50m in entrepreneurship and enterprise, poverty alleviation and education. THF formed a joint venture with former President Clinton, the Clinton Hunter Development Initiative, to support delivery of a sustainable poverty alleviation strategy in Rwanda with economic development as its key driver.

Nearer to home, THF recently co-invested with the Royal Bank of Scotland plc and the Scottish Government to extend, remodel and accelerate a fund to support Scotland's nascent high growth businesses, the Scottish Edge (www.scotedge.com).

Tom sits on the Presidential Advisory Council of President Paul Kagame of Rwanda. He was Knighted in 2005 for services to entrepreneurship and philanthropy and was awarded the prestigious Carnegie Medal of Philanthropy in 2013.

Lady Marion Hunter

Marion was instrumental in the development of Tom's first business. Now a dedicated mother and philanthropist, as co-founder of The Hunter Foundation, Marion oversees investment strategy as well as volunteering on a number of charitable efforts.

Excerpt from Giving Pledge letter:

"Marion and I came to the conclusion we would not burden our 3 kids with great wealth. We would encourage them to find their passion and support them. We don't want to be the richest guys in the graveyard, we want to "do good" while we are still alive. Why let others have all the fun?"

Robert and Arlene Kogod, United States

Robert and Arlene Kogod are active philanthropic supporters of healthcare, education, the fine arts, and other cultural activities. They are collectors of 20th century American fine arts and turn-of-the-century decorative arts. Bob is the former Co-Chairman and Co-CEO of the Charles E. Smith Commercial Realty LP and Charles E. Smith Residential Realty, Inc. He currently serves on the Board of Trustees of Vornado Realty Trust, the Smithsonian Institution Board of Regents, and others. Arlene is a former mental health and youth counselor who supports opportunities for young people, including a college-bound program for at-risk adolescent girls.

Excerpt from Giving Pledge letter:

"It is with great pride and pleasure that we join the Giving Pledge and commit more than half of our wealth during our lifetime, or as planned gifts, to not-for-profit causes. We recognize that we are privileged to have been born in the twentieth century in the United States of America under circumstances that allowed us to earn and accumulate wealth -- and that with that privilege comes responsibility. We commend Warren Buffett and Bill and Melinda Gates for their leadership in this effort, and as exemplars of Alexis de Tocqueville's observation of America's happy impulse to work together to improve the common life by forming voluntary associations. This uniquely American art of association, tempers one's tendencies toward individualism and gives one a habit and taste for serving others. It is in this same spirit and habit of service that we join the Giving Pledge."

Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw, India

Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw, a pioneering biotech entrepreneur, is the Chairperson and Managing Director of Biocon, Asia's leading biopharmaceuticals enterprise. Named among TIME magazine's 100 most influential people in the world, she is recognized as a global thought leader for Biotechnology. She has recently been featured in US-based Scientific American magazine's 'The Worldview 100 List' of the most influential visionaries and ranked No. 2 on 'The Medicine Maker Power List' 2015, an index of the 100 most influential people across the globe in the field of medicine. She is also the recipient of India's coveted national awards Padma Shri and Padma Bhushan.

Excerpt from Giving Pledge letter:

"My philanthropic efforts are largely directed towards making a difference to global healthcare especially in the developing world. I am particularly concerned about the unbearable financial burden that debilitating diseases like cancer impose on patients in poor countries. I am also conscious of the fact that two thirds of the world's population have little or no access to an acceptable quality of healthcare."

PNC and Sobha Menon, UAE

Mr. PNC Menon is the Chairman & Founder of Sobha Group, a multinational real estate development and construction group that has diversified interests and investments in the UAE, India, Oman, Qatar, Bahrain, Brunei and Tanzania.

Sobha's beginnings are rooted in Oman, where the group's India-born founder, Mr. Menon, established an interior design firm in the sultanate in 1976 under the name Services & Trade Company. Since then, the company – now named Sobha after Mr. Menon's wife – has evolved to become one of the largest real estate organizations in India and the Middle East.

In the Gulf, the company is leading über luxury projects in Dubai, such as Sobha Hartland and District One. From extravagant palaces to lavish villas, Mr. Menon continues to be at the forefront of executing consistent quality and on-time delivery for clients across the globe.

Excerpt from Giving Pledge letter:

"With my pledge, I hope to inspire others from India and all corners of the world to partake in philanthropy. Based on my experience, the act of giving creates a degree of happiness that is immeasurable, and I am fortunate that my wife and children share in this belief."

Gary K. Michelson, M.D., United States

Born in Philadelphia, Gary K. Michelson attended Temple University and Hahnemann Medical College, with residency in Orthopedic Surgery. Afterward he completed a fellowship in Spinal Surgery at St. Luke's, in a joint program of Texas Medical Center in association with Baylor University. Disappointed with the very low success rates and unreliability of the spinal surgical procedures at that time, he spent the next 20 years developing new implants, surgical procedures, and the instruments required to carry out those procedures. He was inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame in 2011, and the National Academy of Inventors in 2014. In 2008 he was recognized by Paralyzed Veterans of America as the leading research scientist in the area of spine. In 2015 he was awarded the Alfred B. Sabin Humanitarian Award and received the International Achievement Award of B'nai B'rith.

Dr. Michelson founded, funded, continues to fund and direct three private foundations: The Michelson Medical Research Foundation, The Found Animals Foundation (FAF), and Twenty Million Minds (20MM).

Excerpt from Giving Pledge letter:

"I have been blessed with three healthy and happy children. For that matter, my wife and I are healthy and happy. Each of these things are gifts, blessings if you will. Yes, life is not fair for I have been given way too much. As for the money it cannot all be for us. It must be purposed to do some good in the world. Perhaps to make life a little less unfair."

Gensheng Niu, China

Mr. Niu Gensheng is the founder of the Lao Niu Foundation and Mengniu Group, as well as a co-founder of Yili Group. Mr. Niu currently serves as Vice President of the China Charity Forum and Vice Director of The Nature Conservancy (TNC) China Council.

For his philanthropic work, he received two China Charity Awards, a Lifetime Achievement Award and a Special Achievement Award. He also received the prestigious Oak Leaf Award from TNC, and the Charity Excellence Award from the Committee of 100 in the United States.

The Lao Niu Foundation is a private family foundation established in late 2004 by Mr. Niu Gensheng and his family. Under Mr. Niu's influence, his family also fully devotes to philanthropy, and established the Laoniu Brother & Sister Foundation.

Excerpt from Giving Pledge letter:

"Small victories are based on wisdom, great victories are based on virtue; with the increase of wealth, comes an increase in responsibility; Helping people lets you walk the way of kindness; Let the benefactor be thankful for the beneficiary; If everyone does good, nothing will be bad; One's happiness is directly correlated to how many people love you."

Liz Simons and Mark Heising, United States
Liz Simons

Liz Simons is chair of the board of the Heising-Simons Foundation. A former teacher, Liz founded Stretch to Kindergarten, an early childhood education program. She serves on the Leadership Council of Too Small to Fail, a joint initiative of The Opportunity Institute and the Clinton Foundation, and on several boards including the Foundation for a Just Society, Math for America, and the advisory council for Stanford University's Graduate School of Education. She also volunteers in writing and literacy programs for children. Liz earned a bachelor's degree in journalism from University of California, Berkeley, and a master's in education from Stanford University.

Mark Heising

Mark Heising is the Founder and a Managing Director of Medley Partners, an investment firm located in San Francisco, California. His philanthropic interests are primarily in climate change policy as well as the physical sciences. Mark serves on the boards of the Bipartisan Policy Center, the Environmental Defense Fund and the Heising-Simons Foundation. Previously, he worked as a chip design engineer before founding VLSI Cores, which designed and licensed cryptographic integrated circuits. Mark earned a bachelor's degree in physics and a master's in electrical engineering and computer sciences from the University of California, Berkeley.

Dr. Herbert and Nicole Wertheim, United States

Dr. Wertheim was a 9th grade high school dropout with dyslexia from a disadvantaged home, a survivor of the Miami Juvenile Detention System for truancy. Today, 60 years later with three doctorates, he is the 2011 Horatio Alger Medal of Distinguished Americans Awardee, the Chairman of the Florida International University (FIU) College of Medicine, Trustee Emeritus (after 30 years of service) to the University, and Honorary Chairman of the University Of Florida College Of Engineering. The invitation to join the Giving Pledge would have been unimaginable many years ago as a young man seeking his future, a true testament to the opportunities that only America can offer.

Dr. Wertheim is a clinician, researcher, educator, entrepreneur and founder of Brain Power Incorporated the world largest manufacturer of ophthalmic instruments and chemicals. He was the first more than 40 years ago to discover the dangers of UV and blue light and incorporate sight saving filters into eyeglass lenses that help prevent cataracts and macular degeneration in millions each year. Dr. Wertheim has been recognized and honored by many organizations and major institutions for his 50 years of medical and scientific leadership and his many discoveries including more than 100 patients and trademarks.

The Wertheims Family's foundation has funded hundreds of domestic and foreign charities and organizations since its established almost 40 years ago, including major exhibits at Zoo Miami, construction of Vail Colorado Public Radio Station KPRE, The FIU 1000 seat Herbert and Nicole Wertheim Concert and Performing Arts Center and Horticultural Research Conservatory at FIU. The establishment of the Herbert Wertheim College of Medicine and major funding for The Nicole Wertheim College of Nursing and Health Sciences at Florida International University. Their newest project is the $300 million University of Florida collaborative initiative Herbert Wertheim College of Engineering and the soon to be completed 100,000 sq. ft. Herbert Wertheim Laboratory for Engineering Excellence.

Each year Dr. Wertheim and Nicole, along with their two daughters Erica Wertheim Zohar and Vanessa Von Wertheim, both Foundation members, dedicate substantial time and talent to support the Foundation's awarding and fund raising efforts for more than a hundred scholarships, professorships, financial aid programs including the most recent Million Dollar Horatio Alger Engineering Scholarship Program at the University of Florida.

Excerpt from Giving Pledge letter:

"Many of America's private universities have more than 20 times the endowments of most public institutions of higher learning, and our state legislators are decreasing funding to these public institutions that needs to be made up by private funding. The Wertheim family's talent, time and energy will be dedicated to The Wertheim Family Foundation's future efforts to support the endowments of public universities and colleges."