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10 Largest Foundations in the World


1
Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
Bill Gates' resignation from Microsoft was finalized in July 2008, and he funneled his energies into the Bill & Melinda Gates foundation. On Sept. 25, he attended a press conference for a health reform plan to aid mothers and newborns in poor nations.
Bill Gates' resignation from Microsoft was finalized in July 2008, and he funneled his energies into the Bill & Melinda Gates foundation. On Sept. 25, he attended a press conference for a health reform plan to aid mothers and newborns in poor nations.
Rick Gershon/Getty Images

­­Believing that "every life h­as equal value," Microsoft cofounder Bill Gates and his wife, Melinda, established their foundation in 2000 with $106 million. The foundation's goals include improving health care and education, fighting extreme poverty, and providing increased access to information technology. In June 2006, Warren Buffett, the world's second richest person (behind Gates), pledged ten million shares of his company's stock (worth nearly $31 billion) to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. As of April 2006, the foundation's endowment exceeded $33 billion, which means that to keep its charitable status, it must make approximately $1.65 billion in annual charitable contributions. In addition to his ample financial gifts, Bill Gates has also pledged his time to the foundation, announcing that he will phase out of his managerial role at Microsoft by July 2008 to focus on charity work. ­