The Carnegie Corporation of New York has announced the inaugural recipients of the Andrew Carnegie Medals of Philanthropy. The awards, which commemorate the centennial anniversary of Andrew Carnegie's philanthropy, an epoch ushered in by Carnegie's sale of U.S. Steel to J.P. Morgan, honor seven individuals and families who have used their private wealth on behalf of the public good.
The inaugural recipients of the medals, which will be awarded every two years, are Walter H. and Leonore Annenberg on behalf of the Annenberg Foundation for its work in the field of education; Brooke Astor for her philanthropic efforts on behalf of New York City; Irene Diamond for her contributions to AIDS research; the Gates Family for its contributions in the fields of education and health; David and Laurance S. Rockefeller on behalf of the Rockefeller family for its century-long commitment to philanthropy; financier George Soros for his philanthropy on behalf of civil societies; and CNN founder Ted Turner for gifts that established the United Nations Foundation and the Nuclear Threat Initiative.
"The Andrew Carnegie Medals of Philanthropy honor leaders who understand how modern philanthropy plays a critical role in building and sustaining our democratic institutions," said Carnegie Corporation president Vartan Gregorian. "We believe these individuals and families represent a diverse cross section of philanthropic commitments and geographic locations, as well as old and new views of giving.... By celebrating [Andrew Carnegie's] work and theirs we seek to reinvigorate and challenge the philanthropic community for tomorrow."