Top 10 Philanthropists Making a Positive Impact in 2024

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Philanthropists are the changemakers of our time. Stepping up where traditional solutions fall short, they are a force for good, tackling complex issues and inspiring others to join the cause. In 2024, a year brimming with both challenges and opportunities, these generous individuals will continue to pave the way for a brighter future. From tech titans to longtime advocates, this year’s top philanthropists represent a diverse range of backgrounds and areas of focus. Whether it’s combating global health crises, promoting educational equity, or championing environmental sustainability, their work is making a measurable impact on millions of lives.

This blog will explore the stories of these ten remarkable individuals, delving into their motivations, the causes they hold dear, and the innovative approaches they’re taking to drive positive change. As we celebrate their achievements, we’ll also gain valuable insights into the ever-evolving landscape of philanthropy, a space where collaboration, strategic giving, and a commitment to measurable outcomes are increasingly at the forefront.

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Top Ten Philanthropists Making a Positive Impact

In a world facing immense challenges, a beacon of hope shines through the tireless efforts of philanthropists. These generous individuals are dedicating their resources to tackling some of humanity’s most pressing issues. From global health initiatives to environmental sustainability and social justice movements, their contributions are making a real difference.

This blog series delves into the stories of the top 10 philanthropists who are making a positive impact in 2024. We’ll explore their areas of focus, their motivations, and the innovative ways they are approaching philanthropy. Here, we celebrate their remarkable work and get inspired by their commitment to building a better future.

1. MacKenzie Scott

MacKenzie Scott has emerged as a powerhouse in philanthropy. Since receiving a significant stake in Amazon after her divorce, she’s become a beacon of unrestricted giving. Scott champions a diverse range of causes, focusing on racial equality, LGBTQ+ rights, climate change solutions, and educational equity. Notably, she disburses funds quickly and with minimal bureaucracy, trusting organizations to utilize the resources effectively.

Philanthropists MacKenzie Scott

In 2020 alone, she donated over $6 billion, and her giving sprees have continued into 2023 and 2024. With a data-driven approach and a focus on empowering nonprofits, Scott is revolutionizing how philanthropy tackles global challenges.

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2. Bill and Melinda Gates

For over two decades, Bill and Melinda Gates have been at the forefront of global philanthropy through the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Their focus areas include global health, where they’ve played a critical role in fighting infectious diseases like malaria and HIV/AIDS. They also champion education reform and poverty alleviation, aiming to empower people to lift themselves out of hardship.

Philanthropists-Bill-and Melinda-Gates

The Gates Foundation’s data-driven approach and emphasis on collaboration with governments and other organizations have led to significant progress. Their recent $1 billion commitment to fight climate change highlights their evolving focus on tackling new challenges that threaten global equity.

3. Warren Buffett

Even with his legendary investment prowess, Warren Buffett’s impact extends far beyond the world of finance. This billionaire investor has pledged to donate the vast majority of his wealth to philanthropic causes. A strong believer in Bill and Melinda Gates’ vision, Buffett has directed a significant portion of his giving to the Gates Foundation, supporting their work in global health, education, and poverty alleviation. However, Buffett’s charitable endeavors extend beyond the Gates Foundation.


He also supports the Susan Thompson Buffett Foundation, named after his late wife, which primarily focuses on women’s reproductive health and scholarships for Nebraska students. Through his strategic giving and unwavering commitment to philanthropy, Warren Buffett continues to be a driving force for positive change.

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4. Mark Zuckerberg and Priscilla Chan

Meta Platforms’ co-founder, Mark Zuckerberg, and his wife, pediatrician Priscilla Chan, are a formidable philanthropic duo. Through their Chan Zuckerberg Initiative (CZI), they’ve pledged 99% of their Facebook shares to charity, focusing on personalized learning, disease eradication, and scientific research.


CZI champions equal access to quality education and funding initiatives that empower students and educators. They also support advancements in healthcare, aiming to cure all diseases by the end of the century. From tackling malaria and Zika to promoting early childhood development, Zuckerberg and Chan are a powerful force for positive change.

5. Laurene Powell Jobs

Laurene Powell Jobs, the widow of Apple co-founder Steve Jobs, has emerged as a powerful voice in philanthropy. Leveraging Emerson Collective, the organization she chairs, Powell Jobs tackles issues critical to a just and sustainable future. Education is a cornerstone of her efforts, with College Track, an organization she co-founded, providing support to low-income students pursuing college degrees.


Additionally, she champions immigration reform and environmental justice initiatives. Powell Jobs fosters a more informed and equitable society through strategic investments in media outlets like The Atlantic and philanthropic endeavors like the Waverley Street Foundation.

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6. Michael Bloomberg

Michael Bloomberg, the former New York City mayor and business leader, is a powerhouse in philanthropy. His Bloomberg Philanthropies organization tackles a broad spectrum of issues, with a strong focus on public health. Bloomberg has been a major advocate for tobacco control and gun violence prevention initiatives. He also champions environmental sustainability through programs promoting clean energy solutions.


Beyond public health, Bloomberg Philanthropies empowers cities worldwide by offering consulting services to improve government efficiency and innovation. Through his strategic giving and focus on measurable results, Michael Bloomberg is making a lasting impact on the well-being of cities and citizens worldwide.

7. Charles Koch

Charles Koch, the industrialist titan behind Koch Industries, is a complex figure in philanthropy. While a champion of free-market ideals and libertarian causes, his foundations also direct resources toward cancer research, education initiatives, and poverty reduction. Koch funds think tanks that advocate for limited government and individual liberty.


He also supports Stand Together, a network that empowers communities to address challenges through social entrepreneurship. Despite generating controversy for his political views, Koch’s philanthropic efforts leave an undeniable mark on various social issues.

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8. Mukesh Ambani

Mukesh Ambani, India’s wealthiest individual, is a prominent figure not just in business but also in philanthropy. Through the Reliance Foundation, Ambani focuses his giving on empowering India’s future. The foundation tackles crucial issues like rural development, education, and healthcare.


Programs like the “Dhirubhai Ambani Scholarship Programme” provide educational opportunities, while initiatives like “Bharat-India Jodo” empower marginal farmers. Ambani’s commitment to social progress positions him as a key figure leading philanthropic efforts in India.

9. Azim Premji

Azim Premji, the “Czar of the Indian IT Industry,” is a force for good not just in business but also in philanthropy. Having steered Wipro to global prominence, Premji has dedicated a large portion of his wealth to improving education in India. Through the Azim Premji Foundation, he supports grassroots organizations, funds innovative teaching methods, and establishes Azim Premji University, renowned for its focus on teacher training and quality education.


Premji’s belief that “education is the fundamental right of every child” is driving his mission to empower educators and transform India’s educational landscape.

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10. Carlos Slim

Carlos Slim, the Mexican telecom magnate and one of the richest people in the world, isn’t just a shrewd businessman. He’s also a major philanthropist whose fortune includes tackling critical issues in Mexico and beyond. Through his Carlos Slim Foundation, Slim focuses on education, healthcare, and poverty alleviation.


He’s funded scholarships for over 165,000 young Mexicans, provided vital medical equipment to rural schools, and even helped secure the release of those wrongly imprisoned due to a lack of bail money. Add to that his support for cultural preservation through the Museo Soumaya, and Slim emerges as a powerful force for positive change in Latin America and throughout the world.


Q. What is the philanthropy trend in 2024?

  • Increased focus on equity and trust-based giving: Donors are looking to support organizations that promote diversity, equity, and inclusion, and are giving more control to nonprofits on how they use funds.
  • Challenges for small nonprofits: Economic factors like inflation are making it harder for smaller charities to operate, despite the need in their communities.

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Q. Who are the next generation of philanthropists?

Next-generation philanthropists are young (often Millennials or Gen Z) donors who bring fresh ideas to giving. They care about measurable results, tend to be hands-on, and might use business approaches for social good.

Q. What is a mega-philanthropist?

Mega-philanthropists want to make a big difference in the world and because of that, they are careful about the organizations and missions they invest in. They also don’t want to be the only ones at the table, which is why it makes perfect sense to leverage a mega-gift when you receive one.

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Q. Who are some new philanthropists emerging in 2024?

This list focuses on established philanthropists, but there’s always a new generation making waves. Are there any tech entrepreneurs or celebrities who have recently made significant donations?

Q. How are these philanthropists prioritizing their giving in 2024?

Climate change seems to be a growing concern. Are any philanthropists making significant contributions to this cause this year? Are there any surprising shifts in focus areas compared to last year?

Q. Is there a way to measure the impact of these philanthropic efforts?

Philanthropy is great, but results matter. Are there any metrics available to gauge the effectiveness of these charitable donations?

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Q. How can I get involved in philanthropic efforts myself, even if I don’t have millions to donate?

Donating money is just one way to give back. Are there volunteer opportunities or advocacy groups I can get involved with to support the causes championed by these philanthropists?

Q. Is there any controversy surrounding any of these philanthropists or their chosen causes?

Philanthropy isn’t always straightforward. Are there any discussions about the effectiveness of certain approaches or potential conflicts of interest?


Philanthropy is a powerful force that can create positive change on a large scale. The philanthropists we’ve highlighted in this series are just a few examples of the many individuals who are using their wealth to make a difference. Their dedication to various causes inspires us all to consider how we can contribute to a better world.

Remember that even small acts of generosity can have a significant impact. Let’s all strive to be philanthropists in our way and build a future filled with opportunity and progress.

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