The Carnegie Corporation of New York has announced the winners of the 2011 Carnegie Medal of Philanthropy. This year marks the tenth anniversary of the Carnegie Medal, an honor that is bestowed every two years to families and individuals around the world who believe, as Andrew Carnegie did, in dedicating their private wealth to the public good.
This year's recipients include the Crown family, for their commitment to philanthropy over seventy-five years, a legacy that includes contributions to local, national, and international Jewish needs, Israel, health and human services, Chicago civic organizations, education, and the environment; the Danforth family, whose eponymous foundation closed in 2011 after more than eighty years of service to the St. Louis area and which has been instrumental in the creation of the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center; Fiona and Stanley Druckenmiller, who, in addition to serving on many nonprofit boards, created the Druckenmiller Foundation, which primarily supports medical research, education, and the arts; Fred Kavli, a physicist, entrepreneur, business leader, and philanthropist who eleven years ago divested his interest in Kavlico Corporation to establish the Kavli Foundation, which is dedicated to the goals of advancing science for the benefit of humanity and promoting increased public understanding of scientists and their work; Evelyn and Leonard Lauder, leaders in the cultural and charitable life of New York City, and the driving force behind the philanthropy of the Estée Lauder Companies; Jo Carole and Ronald Lauder, whose lifetime commitment to philanthropy spans causes ranging from the Jewish world to medical research; Li Ka-shing, a Hong Kong-based businessman who has disbursed more than $1.6 billion through his charitable foundation since 1980; Pamela and Pierre Omidyar, who have committed more than $1 billion to causes ranging from entrepreneurship to human rights through the Omidyar Network and other organizations they have created; the Pew Family, whose Pew Charitable Trusts have served the public interest for more than sixty years; and the Pritzker family, whose philanthropic commitment to Chicago has spanned four generations and included support for organizations and causes ranging from health to education to the arts.
"We are honored to bestow the 2011 Carnegie Medal of Philanthropy on truly extraordinary individuals and families who have demonstrated an exemplary, longstanding commitment to philanthropy," said Carnegie Corporation of New York president Vartan Gregorian. "This year's medalists were selected because their vision of philanthropy reflects the ideals of Andrew Carnegie, who asserted that the rich are 'trustees' of their wealth and are under a moral obligation to reinvest it in society in ways that promote the progress of society."