Nov 22, 2021 - Economy

Jeff Bezos donates $100M to Obama Foundation in honor of John Lewis

Jeff Bezos speaking at COP 26

Jeff Bezos speaking at COP26. Photo: Paul Ellis - Pool/Getty Images

Amazon founder Jeff Bezos is giving $100 million to the Obama Foundation in honor of Congressman John Lewis, the foundation announced on Monday.

Why it matters: This is the largest individual donation the Obama Foundation has received to date, as first reported by Puck News.

The big picture: Bezos has been more philanthropic in recent years, as public scrutiny toward him has increased, per Puck News.

  • Some of these donations and pledges include a $1 billion commitment for preschools and a $10 billion pledge to climate nonprofits, known as the Bezos Earth Fund.

Bezos has asked that the foundation name the plaza at the Obama Presidential Center the John Lewis Plaza.

  • The foundation hopes Bezos' willingness to name something after a civil rights leader will "change the paradigm around naming public spaces," per the announcement.
  • There will not be any other restrictions on how the money can be spent, per Puck News.

What they're saying: “We believe that there is incredible power in lifting up the names of extraordinary change agents upon whose shoulders we all stand, and we are thrilled by Mr. Bezos’ offer to name our magnificent Plaza in honor of John Lewis,” said Obama Foundation CEO Valerie Jarrett.

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