Jeff and MacKenzie Bezos were married from 1993 to 2019. They were married a year BEFORE Amazon.com was founded. During their marriage, Jeff’s little e-commerce startup book seller grew into one of the biggest companies in human history. Along the way, Jeff has become the richest person in the world. Unfortunately, as the saying goes, more money, more problems. We don’t really know what kind of issues arose behind the curtain with Jeff and MacKenzie, cough, cough, but we do know that in January 2019 they announced their separation and pending divorce.
Impressively, the divorce was finalized four months later, in April 2019. At the time of their divorce announcement, Jeff had a net worth of $ 136 billion. Obviously, MacKenzie could have been entitled to half of all of Jeff’s assets since they were all acquired during their marriage. If this were true, MacKenzie could have received as much as $ 70 billion in stocks and various other assets.
MacKenzie instead opted to take 20 million Amazon shares, or about a quarter of the couple’s former holdings. At the time of the divorce, those 20 million shares were worth $ 35.6 billion. The transfer instantly made MacKenzie one of the five richest women in the world.
About a month after the divorce settlement was finalized, MacKenzie announced that she had joined The Giving Pledge. At this point, his shares were still worth around $ 35 billion. She further promised:
“to return the majority of my wealth to the company that helped generate it, to do so in a thoughtful way, to start soon, and to continue until the vault is empty.“
Fast forward a little over a year and MacKenzie keeps his promises. Oh, thanks to the surge in Amazon’s stock price, she now has almost twice as much money in the safe. MacKenzie Bezos net worth today is $ 63 billion. For a few hours two weeks ago, she was the richest woman in the world when her net worth temporarily exceeded $ 65.6 billion.
Today, MacKenzie released a statement outlining how, over the past 12 months, she has already donated around $ 1.7 billion to various organizations, mostly those that focus on racial, gender and other inequalities. Written under her new favorite name “MacKenzie Scott” (Scott is both her old middle name and her grandfather’s last name), she revealed that 116 organizations have received donations in the past 12 months. According to his statement:
“Like many, I watched the first half of 2020 with a mixture of heartbreak and horror. Life will never stop finding new ways to expose inequalities in our systems; or wake up to the fact that such an unbalanced civilization is not only unjust, but also unstable. What fills me with hope is the thought of what will happen if each of us thinks about what we can offer …
… Last fall, I asked a team of nonprofit advisors with key representatives from historically marginalized ethnic, gender and gender identity groups to help me find and assess organizations with impact. major on various causes. While this work is in progress and will last for years, I am releasing an update today because my own reflection after recent events has revealed a dividend of privilege that I had overlooked: the attention I can call for. organizations and leaders who drive change.“
MacKenzie categorized his donations into 9 “areas of need,” and the amount each region received in total. These 9 areas of need and the amounts received are:
Racial equity: $ 586,700,000
LGBTQ + equity: $ 46,000,000
Gender equality: $ 133,000,000
Economic mobility: $ 399,500,000
Empathy and fractures: $ 55,000,000
Functional democracy: $ 72,000,000
Public health: $ 128,300,000
Global development: $ 130,000,000
Climate change: $ 125,000,000
Total = $ 1,675,500,000
For what it’s worth, Jeff Bezos’ net worth is currently $ 180 billion. Compared to his ex-wife and other extremely wealthy people, he has been a relative miser when it comes to charity. Until 2018, he had barely given up any of his wealth, opting instead to invest billions in real estate acquisitions, the Washington Post and his Blue Origin pet space project. We don’t judge. Rich people can do whatever they want with their money. And maybe Jeff has a huge plan in working for a philanthropic foundation! But it’s worth noting that out of the 10 richest people in the world, he’s the only one who hasn’t sketched out a plan to donate a significant portion of their net worth to charity. He is the only person in the top 5 not to have signed The Giving Pledge.
Jeff pledged $ 2 billion to fight homelessness in 2018. And then last year he committed $ 10 billion over his lifetime to fight climate change. So he comes. It seemed, however, that he needed a little help. Maybe seeing his ex-wife praising him as she empties the safe will inspire him to do more. I mean after all, his net worth has grown by $ 75 billion this year alone. He could donate all of this to charity and still be the richest person in the world.
We will see! MacKenzie certainly won’t wait.