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Warren Buffett steps down as Gates Foundation trustee, donates another $4.1 billion

PUBLISHED ON 2021-06-23 20:42:00 EST Ishika Dangayach

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Warren Buffett resigned as a trustee of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, one of the world's largest private philanthropic organizations, on Wednesday as he donated another $4.1 billion in Berkshire Hathaway shares to charity.

The donation this year marked the halfway point for the 90-year-old, who pledged in 2006 to give away all of his Berkshire shares through annual gifts to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Susan Thompson Buffett Foundation, Sherwood Foundation, Howard G. Buffett Foundation, and NoVo Foundation.

“Today is a milestone for me,” Buffett said in a statement. “In 2006, I pledged to distribute all of my Berkshire Hathaway shares — more than 99% of my net worth — to philanthropy. With today’s $4.1 billion distribution, I’m halfway there,” CNBC reported.

He did not explain why he was departing the Gates Foundation board at this time, but he did voice his support for the foundation's current CEO and strategy.

Over the last 15 years, Buffett has donated more than $27 billion of his own money to charity. He is one of three Gates Foundation board members, along with Bill Gates and Melinda French Gates, who announced their divorce last month after 27 years of marriage.

The 21-year-old foundation has grown into one of the most powerful and influential organizations, investing more than $50 billion to combat poverty, disease, and inequity around the world.

Over a decade ago, Gates and Buffett launched "The Giving Pledge," pushing lots of U.S. billionaires to donate at least half of their wealth to charity.

Since then, many billionaires have been involved in charity ranging from genetic and cancer research to education, gun control, libraries, and the arts.

Buffett held 474,998 Berkshire A shares at the time. Today, he disclosed that he owned 238,624 shares worth around $100 billion.

Buffett stated that his 16 yearly contributions to the five foundations totaled $41 billion when disbursed. According to FactSet, Buffett is Berkshire's top stakeholder, owning around 39 % of the Class A shares.

With inputs from CNBC


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