quinta-feira, junho 29, 2006

Gates Foundation sobre Warren Buffet

From: "Patty Stonesifer"
Date: Wed, 28 Jun 2006 17:32:04 -0700
Subject: Thoughts and Plans

As you probably know, Warren Buffett made a momentous and humbling announcement this week: He will give away the bulk of his wealth for charitable activities, including a substantial portion to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Because you are one of our crucial partners, I wanted to share a few thoughts with you about the gift and what it means to us.

Warren pledged to donate stock he holds in Berkshire Hathaway Inc. to the Gates Foundation and four foundations related to his family. He earmarked ten million Class B shares for the benefit of the Gates Foundation. Five percent of the balance of these shares will be delivered each year, and starting in 2009, the Gates Foundation must spend the value of this annual gift in addition to spending 5 percent of its own endowment. The total value of the pledge will depend on the price of Berkshire Hathaway stock, but we expect that as a result of these contributions our annual grantmaking will roughly double, starting in 2009. You can read more about all of Warren’s pledges in the July 10 issue of Fortune magazine, or online at http://www.fortune.com/.

I can not put into words how much this amazing commitment by Warren means to me, to Bill and Melinda Gates, and to the entire team at the foundation. It is a historic statement, not just about the power of philanthropy, but about the importance of our shared responsibility to serve those most in need. There are no words of thanks that will suffice.

While this is a breathtaking announcement, it also presents us with a huge challenge: How do we make the most of Warren's amazing commitment? In the coming months, we have to do a lot of planning, and a lot of listening. Through it all, we’ll remain absolutely committed to Bill and Melinda Gates’ goal of reducing inequality in the United States and around the world. We will be guided in this process by a few key principles:

· Our first priority will be to go deeper into our current strategies, accelerating the work we are already supporting. As Warren wrote in his pledge letter, we are focused on a few important but critically underfunded issues, and we will keep it that way for the time being.
· We reorganized earlier this year into three grantmaking groups, each run by a president—U.S. Programs (run by Allan Golston), Global Development (Sylvia Mathews), and Global Health (Tachi Yamada)—and an operations group run by Chief Operating Officer Cheryl Scott. That reorganization was also designed to give leaders at all levels of the foundation more authority and allow us to move faster, which will be critical to managing the growth we’re about to experience.
· As large as our annual grantmaking will become, it will always be dwarfed by the money governments and markets can bring to the table. They will continue to be the key to solving these problems, and we will partner with them rather than replace them.
· We must continue and increase the priority we place on the collaboration and learning we do with other foundations, governments, or non-governmental organizations. That’s the only way to make sure our combined resources have the greatest possible impact.
· We also have to share the results of our grantmaking, good or bad. On www.gatesfoundation.org you can read our 2005 annual report as well as a series of case studies, to which we will be adding in the coming months and years. We still have a long way to go, but this is a major goal for our foundation, and we are deeply committed to it.

I’ll conclude by asking you to do something for us. As we grow, truth-tellers will become ever more important to us. So please: Let us know when things are going well, and even more importantly, when they aren’t. Everyone at the foundation understands that we need to learn from bad news as well as from good, but we can only do that if you help us.

Thank you for being such a committed partner. All of us at the Gates Foundation are honored to work alongside you.

Patty Stonesifer
Chief Executive Officer

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