Elsewhere online
February 19, 2015

Opinion: In Silicon Valley, Philanthropy or Money Management?

Online magazine Pacific Standard posts a critical look at the flood of giving by technology moguls to the Silicon Valley Community Foundation and how much—or how little—of it flows to charity work in the surrounding community.

While massive and often stock-denominated contributions by Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg and other tech billionaires have swelled the foundation's assets from $2.9-billion to more than $6-billion since 2012, it made only $8-million in direct grants to local community organizations last year. Much of the money in foundation coffers rests in donor-advised funds.

Large-scale gifts to the foundation "are, first and foremost, a wealth management tool," according to the article, which was originally published by Pacific Standard partner site Capital & Main. "Assets are parked at the designated charity in order to obtain tax breaks, and these days they generally stay under the control of the donor."

Read a Chronicle of Philanthropy article on how the Silicon Valley Community Foundation has forged ties with tech entrepreneurs.