Fiona Druckenmiller, a former portfolio manager at the Dreyfus Corporation, and her husband Stanley Druckenmiller, the founder of Duquesne Capital Management and longtime associate of George Soros, gave $705 million to the Druckenmiller Foundation in 2009, the Chronicle of Philanthropy reports.
While many of the wealthiest Americans have been reluctant to make mega-gifts — only six commitments of $100 million or more were announced during 2009 — the Druckenmillers have been among the few to increase their giving. During the summer, for example, they pledged $100 million to New York University's Langone Medical Center, where Ms. Druckenmiller serves as a trustee, to establish a neuroscience institute.
Established in 1993, the Druckenmiller Foundation primarily supports medical research, education, and efforts to fight poverty. In 2006, it awarded $25 million to the Harlem Children's Zone, whose board Mr. Druckenmiller chairs. In addition, the couple has provided gifts to Bowdoin College, the Spence School, Human Rights Watch, the Robin Hood Foundation, and the New York Stem Cell Foundation, as well as more than $46 million to the Langone Center in addition to this year's gift.
In a statement, Ms. Druckenmiller said that she and her husband believe scientific discoveries in neuroscience and stem cell research will one day benefit and lengthen the lives of many people. "Every family is affected in one way or another by brain disorders or brain aging," she noted. "The brain is one of the last great frontiers in medicine, and advances in related research could help both the individual and society function at a higher level."