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The Father of All Philanthropists

Wednesday, June 28, 2006
Philanthropy has always been good for business, but Warren Buffett's now legendary donation to The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is remarkable in so many ways that I simply haven't been able to stop thinking about it since I first heard the news coverage a few days ago.

I admire Warren Buffett's humility (the fact that he was willing to merge his fortune with someone else's because he felt that their foundation could accomplish more good in the world than he could on his own) and the fact that he wasn't willing to give his adult children the world on a silver platter (something that would have happened by default had he not made a decision to the contrary). I also admire the fact that he speaks up for what's right, even when his views aren't popular amongst his fiscal peers. (He's in favor of estate taxes and life's other great equalizers -- something that doesn't exactly score you a lot of free drinks at the country club.)

When you read about his humble beginnings, his stellar business career, and the principles that have guided him every step of the way, it's pretty awe-inspiring stuff. As the Christian Science Monitor noted in its tribute to Buffett: "In the end, it truly is a billion-dollar heart, not wallet, that makes a difference." And Warren Buffett certainly has that.

| posted by Ann D @ 11:54 PM