Pierre and Pam Omidyar

pierre and pam omidyar
IMG: via time.com Photo Credit: Allison V. Smith

Pierre and Pam Omidyar amassed their fortune after Mr. Omidyar founded eBay in September of 1995.

Mrs. Omidyar currently works as the chairwoman of HopeLab. As a young researcher at an immunology lab, Pam Omidyar spent hours examining cancer cells in her lab. In order to relax after work, she would play video games, and she began to wonder if video games could also act as therapy for children struggling with cancer. And thus began HopeLab, a nonprofit that conducts research on a range of chronic illnesses, and that produces solutions like Re-Mission, a video game that helps youth cope with their cancer. Pam Omidyar founded HopeLab in the 1980s to use her skills as an immunology researcher to help children. HopeLab now focuses its investigations on cancer, obesity, sickle cell disease, autism and major depressive disorder.

In addition to HopeLab, the couple heads the Omidyar Network. The network is actually an investment firm that empower people to help their communities.  The network donates to many other nonprofits including African Leadership Academy, GlobalGiving, and Wikipedia. The couple makes generous donations to all types of charities every year. Notably, in 2004 they donated $173.2 million.

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