Charles Koch Reaches Out to George Mason University
Charles Koch has become a major donor at George Mason University, which has made this school a legal and economic powerhouse in the conservative world. Koch’s tens of millions of dollars in donations has made the law school and the economics school competitors with the best in the nation. Within 4 years, the Charles Koch foundation donated almost 48 million dollars to the school. This is significant considering that the foundation does not give more than 1 million dollars to any other school in a given year.
The article went on to explain that this type of giving is common, especially with conservative billionaires. Another such conservative billionaire is Phil Knight, the co-founder of Nike. He has recently donated 400 million dollars for scholarships to Stanford University. Charles Koch’s representatives have made it clear that all of his donations come without any conditions or requirements. The article also explained how it fills the growing gap that a lessening public support has created. And in the past few years, Koch has given amounts that surpass 30 percent of the university’s private donations.
Charles Koch was born in 1935 and has played a big role in business, politics and philanthropy throughout his career. His brother, David, also owns 42 percent and serves as the executive vice president of the company. Charles was born in Wichita, Kansas but when he was of college age, he decided to move east. He attended in the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he received a bachelors and 2 masters degrees in engineering, mechanical and chemical. It was after he finished his education that Charles decided that it was time to move back to Wichita and help with his father’s company, Rock Island Oil and Refining Company. Several years later, he was named as president and took over the company. From 1967, when Charles took over the company, to 2006, the company grew by 2000, with an annual revenue of 90 billion dollars. Charles’ worth is now over 40 billion dollars. Koch has also been heavily involved in politics. He regularly gives hundreds of millions of dollars to various political candidates and causes that align with his libertarian beliefs.