News The Power of Giving

Apple’s Tim Cook Plans to Give His Fortune to Philanthropic Efforts

Extraordinary people often make the best philanthropists, and that appears to be the case for Tim Cook. Cook, Apple’s CEO, plans to give away his wealth to philanthropic projects. As Apple’s CEO, Cook has accrued hundreds of millions of dollars, the vast majority of which he will donate to others.

Cook was close with Jobs and filled in for him during Jobs’ medical struggles at the end of his life. In October 2011, Cook took over as the CEO of Apple.

According to Fortune, Cook has used his position at Apple as a platform to advocate for issues that are important to him. “You want to be the pebble in the pond that creates the ripple for change”, he says.

Cook stands up for his issues, which include stopping the transmission of AIDS, as well as immigration reform and human rights. Cook believes that changing the work has always been more important to Apple than simply making money, and his philanthropic efforts are a clear reflection of this generous mindset.

While Cook plans to put his 10-year-old nephew through college, this is a penny compared to the amount he plans to donate to philanthropic projects. Cook’s fortune is based in Apple stock and measure to roughly $120 million. Additionally, he holds restricted stock that is worth $665 million if fully invested properly.

What Tim Cook is doing is a fine example of philanthropy in its finest form. If the world were full of more Tim Cooks, the world would be a better place.

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Out of the Limelight: The Jobs’ Generous Giving

Steve and Laurene Powell Jobs
IMG: via Forbes

The world loved Steve Jobs. The innovative, intelligent college-dropout who founded Apple and Pixar was charismatic and easy to like. He inspired people with his products and vision, and devastated many with his death.

But not everyone had all nice things to say about the Apple CEO. He eventually reached a net worth of $10.2 billion before his death in October 2011, and many criticized the business magnate for not being generous with his fortune. He was worth so much money, yet he hadn’t mentioned any charitable giving to his biographer nor had he gone public about large donation like Bill Gates did. People felt that someone who had such a large fortune ought to be giving more of it away.

But what they didn’t know is that he was giving some of it away. He and his wife, Laurene Powell Jobs, had quietly been giving to charitable causes for over two decades—they just didn’t feel a need to go public about it.

“We’re really careful about amplifying the great work of others in every way that we can, and we don’t like attaching our names to things,” Powell Jobs said in an interview with the New York Times. In other words, they are a private family that doesn’t feel the need to blast their famous name at every good deed.

It’s only recently that Laurene Powell Jobs has decided to step a little more into the limelight. She’s pushing for changes in education, conservation, nutrition, immigration, and even gun control. About a decade ago, Powell Jobs formed a group called Emerson Collective, which is an organization that awards grants and investments in education and other initiatives.

Emerson Collective is an LLC, rather than a certified non-profit, which means it can donate to for-profit, non-profit, and even political causes alike. And unlike a foundation, it doesn’t have to publicly report what it gives. That allows for an incredible amount of freedom and privacy, which is right up the Jobs family’s alley.

Powell-Jobs also helped form an initiative called College Track in 1997, which provides college prep for aspiring college students. Through College Track, she has served as a mentor to young people, helping them achieve their goals.

“It’s not about getting any public recognition for her giving, it’s to help touch and transform individual live,” said one of Powell Jobs’ close friends, philanthropist Laura Arrillaga-Andreessen.