Eleven More Families Sign 'Giving Pledge'

The Giving Pledge has announced that eleven more families have signed on to the campaign, bringing to ninety-two the total number of pledge signatories.

New signatories include Manoj Bhargava, Charles R. Bronfman, Dan and Jennifer Gilbert, Reed Hastings and Patty Quillin, Peter B. Lewis, Gordon and Betty Moore, Jonathan M. Nelson, Jorge M. and Darlene Perez, Claire and Leonard Tow, Albert Lee Ueltschi, and Romesh and Kathleen Wadhwani.

Initiated by Warren Buffett and Bill and Melinda Gates in 2010, the Giving Pledge initiative aims to inspire conversations about philanthropy, increase charitable giving in the United States, and inspire the wealthiest Americans to learn from one another, get smarter about their giving, and contribute to changing the norms around wealth and giving.

"We've said from the beginning that this is a long-term effort, so it's exciting to see continued progress over the last two years," said Bill Gates, co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. "This new group brings extensive business and philanthropic experience that will enrich the conversation about how to make philanthropy as impactful as possible. Their thoughtfulness and deep commitment to philanthropy are an inspiration to me, and I'm sure to many others as well."

The greatest utility of the group, a number of signatories told the Wall Street Journal, comes out of private annual meetings where Pledgers share stories and debate approaches to philanthropy. At their most recent meeting in May, the group discussed the merits of impact investing — an approach to investing that considers not only financial return but the social and environmental impacts of an investment. "If I get one idea out of it by joining, that would be enough for me," Bhargava, the founder of Living Essentials, who previously had publicly committed to giving away his fortune, told the Journal.

For a complete list of all ninety-two pledge signatories and/or to read their pledge letters, visit the Giving Pledge Web site. 

Geoffrey A. Fowler. "More Billionaires Sign On to Giving Money Away." Wall Street Journal 09/18/2012. "Eleven More U.S. Families Pledge Majority of Wealth to Philanthropy." Giving Pledge Press Release 09/18/2012.