Philanthropy Hall of Fame

These great donors (all posthumous) changed the nation and the world through their charitable giving. In the entries below we offer historic images and brisk biographical profiles that capture the essence of each man and woman, the sources of their fortunes, and the tactics and results of their philanthropy.

The honorees, nearly three score in number, are organized alphabetically below. But you may re-sort them by any of several particular qualities just by clicking on the relevant button.

Name Era Source of Fortune Philanthropic Focus Lifetime Giving Giving Pledge Qualified Religion Hometown (as Adult) Sex Alma Mater Last Name
Conrad Hilton 20th century hotels religion, medical yes Catholic Dallas, Texas male New Mexico Tech Hilton
Milton Hershey 20th century food and beverage economic opportunity, K–12 education, youth yes Mennonite Hershey, Pa. male No college Hershey
David Packard 20th century technology conservation, public policy, and higher education yes Episcopalian Palo Alto, Calif. male Stanford University Packard
Ewing Kauffman 20th century health and lifestyle entrepreneurship, K-12 education, substance abuse yes Presbyterian Kansas City, Mo. male Kansas City Junior College Kauffman
Bill Daniels 20th century telecommunications economic opportunity, free enterprise, K-12 education, sports, substance abuse, youth yes Protestant Denver, Colo. male New Mexico Military Institute Daniels
Enoch Pratt 19th century finance economic opportunity, libraries yes Quaker Baltimore, Md. male No college Pratt
Herbert Hoover 20th century mining free enterprise, higher education, public policy yes Quaker Palo Alto, Calif. male Stanford University Hoover
Bernice Pauahi Bishop 19th century inheritance K–12 education no Congregationalist Honolulu, Hawaii female No college Bishop
Andrew Carnegie 19th century manufacturing arts, higher education, libraries yes Presbyterian/none Pittsburgh, Pa. / New York, N.Y. male No college Carnegie
Peter Cooper 19th century manufacturing economic opportunity, higher education yes Unitarian New York, N.Y. male No college Cooper
St. Katharine Drexel 19th century inheritance African Americans, economic opportunity, Native Americans, religion yes Catholic Philadelphia, Pa. female No college Drexel
James Duke 20th century manufacturing, utilities higher education, medical, religion, youth yes Methodist New York, N.Y. male Eastman Business College Duke
Harry Earhart 20th century oil free enterprise, higher education yes Unknown Ann Arbor, Mich. male No college Earhart
George Eastman 20th century manufacturing arts, health, higher education yes Episcopalian Rochester, N.Y. male No college Eastman
Thomas Eddy 18th century finance economic opportunity, medical yes Quaker New York, N.Y. male No college Eddy
Don Fisher 20th century retail arts, K–12 education yes Jewish San Francisco, Calif. male University of California, Berkeley Fisher
Zachary Fisher 20th century real estate public safety, veterans yes Jewish New York, N.Y. male No college Fisher
Henry Ford 20th century manufacturing American history, medical yes Episcopalian Detroit, Mich. male No college Ford
Benjamin Franklin 18th century real estate economic opportunity, health, higher education, libraries, public safety yes None Philadelphia, Pa. male No college Franklin
Mary Elizabeth Garrett 19th century inheritance higher education, women yes Methodist Baltimore, Md. female female seminary in New Jersey Garrett
J. Paul Getty 20th century oil arts yes Methodist Guildford, England male University of Oxford Getty
Stephen Girard 18th century finance economic opportunity, medical, higher education yes Catholic Philadelphia, Pa. male No college Girard
Edward Harkness 20th century inheritance arts, health, higher education, K-12 education, museums yes Episcopalian New York, N.Y. male Yale University Harkness
Ima Hogg 20th century inheritance arts, health yes Episcopalian Houston, Texas female University of Texas at Austin Hogg
W. K. Kellogg 20th century food and beverage animals, health, youth yes Seventh-day Adventist Battle Creek, Mich. male No college Kellogg
S. S. Kresge 20th century retail economic opportunity, religion, temperance yes Methodist Detroit, Mich. male Eastman Business College Kresge
Eli Lilly 20th century health and lifestyle health, higher education, religion yes Episcopalian Indianapolis, Ind. male Asbury College Lilly
Nicholas Longworth 19th century food and beverage, real estate economic opportunity yes Unknown Cincinnati, Ohio male No college Longworth
Oseola McCarty 20th century services higher education yes Baptist Hattiesburg, Miss. female No college McCarty
Nettie Fowler McCormick 19th century manufacturing higher education, international, K-12 education, religion yes Methodist Chicago, Ill. female Genesee Wesleyan Seminary McCormick
Andrew Mellon 20th century finance, manufacturing arts, higher education yes Episcopalian Pittsburgh, Pa. male No college Mellon
J. P. Morgan 19th century finance arts, religion, science yes Episcopalian New York, N.Y. male Yale University Morgan
John Olin 20th century manufacturing conservation, free enterprise, higher education, public policy yes Episcopalian East Hampton, N.Y. male Cornell University Olin
Raymond Orteig 20th century hospitality prizes yes Catholic New York, N.Y. male No college Orteig
George Peabody 19th century finance economic opportunity, higher education, libraries, museums yes Unitarian London, England male No college Peabody
Thomas Perkins 19th century trade arts, disabilities, health yes Unitarian Boston, Mass. male No college Perkins
J. Howard Pew 20th century oil free enterprise, public policy yes Presbyterian Philadelphia, Pa. male Grove City College Pew
Henry Phipps Jr. 19th century finance economic opportunity, health, parks yes Episcopalian Pittsburgh, Pa. male No college Phipps
John Rockefeller Sr. 19th century oil economic opportunity, health, higher education, international, religion yes Baptist New York, N.Y. male Folsom's Business College Rockefeller
John Rockefeller Jr. 20th century inheritance American history, arts, conservation, higher education, religion yes Baptist New York, N.Y. male Brown University Rockefeller
Julius Rosenwald 20th century retail K–12 education, religion yes Jewish Chicago, Ill. male No college Rosenwald
Margaret Olivia Sage 20th century inheritance economic opportunity, higher education, religion, women yes Presbyterian New York, N.Y. female Troy Female Seminary Sage
Ellen Browning Scripps 19th century media health, K-12 education, science yes Episcopalian San Diego, Calif. female Knox College Scripps
William Simon 20th century finance economic opportunity, free enterprise, K-12 education, religion, sports yes Catholic Summit, N.J. male Lafayette College Simon
Robert Smith 20th century real estate American history, arts, health, higher education yes Jewish Arlington, Va. male University of Maryland Smith
James Smithson 19th century inheritance museums yes Episcopalian None male University of Oxford Smithson
Leland Stanford 19th century railroads higher education yes Protestant San Francisco, Calif. male Cazenovia Seminary Stanford
Nathan Straus 19th century retail health, religion, youth yes Jewish New York, N.Y. male No college Straus
John Templeton 20th century finance free enterprise, prizes, religion, science yes Presbyterian Lyford Cay, Bahamas male Yale University, University of Oxford Templeton
Judah Touro 19th century trade health, religion, youth yes Jewish New Orleans, La. male No college Touro
William Volker 19th century manufacturing economic opportunity, free enterprise, higher education, public policy yes Lutheran Kansas City, Mo. male No college Volker
Madam C. J. Walker 20th century health and lifestyle civil rights, public policy yes African Methodist Episcopal Pittsburgh, Pa. female No college Walker
John Walton 20th century inheritance, utilities K–12 education yes Presbyterian San Diego, Calif. male College of Wooster Walton
George Washington 18th century real estate higher education, religion yes Episcopalian Alexandria, Va. male No college Washington
Isaiah Williamson 19th century trade economic opportunity, higher education yes Quaker Philadelphia, Pa. male No college Williamson

Almanac

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Philanthropy

A compendium of the Great Donors, Great Achievements, Great Ideas, and Latest Facts on private giving in the U.S.