2011 Medal Recipients
The Crown Family
The Crown family began making contributions to those in need over 75 years ago, at a time when they had very little. But Henry, Irving, Edward and Herman Crown, who grew up in poverty, were forever thankful for the opportunities afforded them by living in the United States.
By dint of unusual ability, remarkable ingenuity, and a tremendous amount of hard work, they built a substantial family enterprise, but they always devoted a portion of their time and resources to numerous worthwhile causes. They passed this “responsibility” on to their children and to their grandchildren who have perpetuated the family’s sense of commitment to the care of others. Today their great-grandchildren are also involved to help insure continuation of what all four generations agree is a core value of the family.
The family’s philanthropy covers local, national and international Jewish needs, Israel, health and human services, Chicago civic organizations, education, and the environment.
The Danforth Family
From 1927 until its closing in May 2011, the Danforth Foundation had several focus areas including advancing education throughout the United States and working to insure the long-term vitality of Missouri’s St. Louis region through various capital and institutional improvements including a major focus on advancing plant and life sciences.
William H. Danforth, M.D., Chancellor Emeritus of Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri, transformed the institution into one of the top research universities in the country and made it an important part of the St. Louis economy. He was also instrumental in the creation and growth of the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center developed to improve the human condition through plant science.
John C. Danforth was a two-term Missouri Attorney General and three-term U.S. Senator whose major legislative initiatives were in the areas of international trade, telecommunications, health care, research and development, transportation, and civil rights. He served as Special Envoy for Peace in Sudan, where he focused on ending the 20-year civil war in that country, and also served as U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations.
Fiona and Stanley Druckenmiller
Fiona and Stanley Druckenmiller have a long history of generous philanthropy.
Fiona Druckenmiller received her Bachelor of Science degree with honors from Barnard College, and received her MBA degree from NYU's Stern Business School. She is a Chartered Financial Analyst.
Her financial career began at Fred Alger Management as a research associate. Thereafter, she joined Dreyfus Corporation, as a foreign securities analyst, and then Portfolio Manager for mutual funds with combined assets of some $400 million. In 2010, she founded and now runs F.D., a Manhattan gallery featuring an exceptional range of rare jewels, fine art, glass, and sculpture.
Fiona is a Trustee of Columbia University and the NYU Langone Medical Center. She also serves as Vice Chair of the Board of Trustees of the American Museum of Natural History, and is a member of the Board of The Bloomberg Family Foundation Inc.
Stanley Druckenmiller graduated with honors from Bowdoin College with degrees in Economics and English, and thereafter earned graduate credits in Economics from the University of Michigan.
After working at the Pittsburgh National Bank, in 1981 Stan founded Duquesne Capital Management, which he ran until he closed the firm at the end of 2010. From 1988 to 2000, he was a Managing Director at Soros Fund Management, where he served as Lead Portfolio Manager of the Quantum Fund and Chief Investment Officer (1989-2000), and had overall responsibility for funds with a peak asset value of $22 billion.
Stan is Chairman of the Board of the Harlem Children's Zone, is a Board member of the Children's Scholarship Fund, Memorial Sloan Kettering, and the Environmental Defense Fund, and serves on the investment committee of Bowdoin College.
Fiona and Stan have funded and run the Druckenmiller Foundation, which has been supporting, among other things, medical research, education, and the arts.
Fred Kavli, a Norwegian-born U.S. citizen, is a physicist, entrepreneur, business leader, innovator, and philanthropist. He is the founder of the Kavlico Corporation in Southern California, which became one of the world's largest suppliers of sensors for aeronautic, automotive, and industrial applications. In 2000, he divested his interest in Kavlico and established The Kavli Foundation, which is dedicated to the goals of advancing science for the benefit of humanity and promoting increased public understanding and support for scientists and their work. Mr. Kavli is a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and former member of the U.S. President’s Council of Advisors on Science and
Technology. He is a member of the Norwegian Academy of Technological Sciences and recipient of the Royal Norwegian Order of Merit for Outstanding Service. Recent honors include receiving honorary doctorate degrees from the Norwegian University of Science and Technology, and Northwestern University. In 2011 he received the Bower Award for Business Leadership from the Franklin Institute.
Evelyn and Leonard Lauder
Evelyn and Leonard Lauder have been dedicated philanthropists throughout their lives. They are leaders in the cultural and charitable life of New York City and beyond, and the driving force behind the philanthropic efforts of The Estée Lauder Companies. Mr. and Mrs. Lauder oversee The Lauder Foundation and The Leonard and Evelyn Lauder Foundation, which are private, non-operating foundations that provide grants to a wide variety of public charities, including those in the education and medical fields. The Lauders’ renowned generosity has benefited many organizations devoted to health and human services, education and inner-city schools, the environment, women’s causes, and the arts.
Mrs. Lauder joined the Board of Overseers of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in 1990 and spearheaded the fundraising for the first Breast Center there. She co-created the Pink Ribbon in 1992 and established the Breast Cancer Research Foundation® in 1993, which has raised more than $330 million to date. She is Trustee Emerita of Trinity School and sits on the Board of the Central Park Conservancy.
Mr. Lauder is a Charter Trustee of the University of Pennsylvania and Co-Founder of its Joseph H. Lauder Institute of Management and International Studies; Co-Founder and Chairman of the Alzheimer’s Drug Discovery Foundation; Chairman Emeritus and a Trustee of The Aspen Institute; and Chairman Emeritus of the Whitney Museum of American Art.
Jo Carole and Ronald Lauder
Following in the footsteps set out by his parents, Ronald S. Lauder, businessman, philanthropist, patron of the arts, international and civic causes, along with his wife Jo Carole, has gone even further in making his city, country, and the world a better place for future generations.
Mr. Lauder has created successful businesses throughout the world while continuing his role as Chairman of Clinique Laboratories. He has served his country in the Pentagon and as U.S. ambassador to Austria. Deeply committed to his Jewish heritage, he has held the highest positions from Chairman of the Conference of Presidents and head of the World Jewish Congress, and created the Ronald S. Lauder Foundation which has built almost 30 schools in Central and Eastern Europe. A long-time patron of the arts, Mr. Lauder was a Trustee and later Chairman of The Museum of Modern Art and today serves as Honorary Chairman. Ten years ago he created the Neue Galerie New York, a museum dedicated to German and Austrian art.
Jo Carole Lauder has shared her husband’s commitment to MoMA for over 40 years, holding numerous positions and serving as President of the International Council for the museum. She devotes much of her time today to FAPE, bringing art to American Embassies throughout the world, and extends her work to the medical community where she serves on the Board of Trustees of the Mount Sinai Medical Center.
Born in 1928 in Chaozhou, Guangdong Province, along the east coast of China, Mr. Li was forced to flee with his family to Hong Kong to escape the perils of war. At the tender age of 14, he lost his father to tuberculosis and, as the eldest son, became his family’s provider, laboring 16-hour days in a plastics manufacturing company.
His work and determination to build something better for his family led Mr. Li to found Cheung Kong Industries in 1950. In time, that company would become the largest manufacturer and exporter of plastics in Hong Kong. By 1972, Cheung Kong Holdings branched into real estate, was listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, and by 1979, he acquired Hutchison Whampoa. As chairman of Cheung Kong Holdings and Hutchison Whampoa Limited, Mr. Li oversees a corporate family of 240,000 spanning 52 nations, and providing goods and services in port operations, retail, energy, telecommunications, real estate, hotels, and technology.
Mr. Li established the Li Ka Shing Foundation in 1980 to cultivate a culture of giving and to support creative, constructive, and sustainable projects in pursuit of this ideal. In 2006, in a speech entitled “My Third Son,” he urged a new spirit of philanthropy for Asia to transcend the traditional values of giving only to family and give to community as well. To date, the Foundation has granted over US$1.6 billion to charitable causes throughout the world and remains one of the most well-endowed philanthropies with over US$8.3 billion in assets.
Mr. Li has been named Entrepreneur of the Millennium by The Times and Ernst & Young in the United Kingdom, and received the first ever Malcolm S. Forbes Lifetime Achievement Award by Forbes Magazine. He is Knight Commander of the Order of the British Empire and received the Commandeur, Légion d'honneur from the French government.
Pamela and Pierre Omidyar
Starting from the premise that people are basically good, Pierre Omidyar created eBay – an online platform that gives people equal access to information, opportunity, and tools to pursue their goals. Today Pierre is Chairman of eBay, which enables more than 90 million buyers and sellers to connect as well as send and receive payments through PayPal, which operates in 190 markets and 24 currencies.
In 2004, Pierre and his wife Pam founded Omidyar Network, a philanthropic investment firm that supports organizations in areas such as microfinance, property rights, and government transparency. Pierre serves as a trustee of the Punahou School, is on the board of the Santa Fe Institute, and is a commissioner for President Barack Obama’s Commission on White House Fellowships. Pierre is also CEO and Publisher of Civil Beat, a news service in Hawaii. As philanthropists, Pierre and Pam have committed more than $1 billion to programs supporting a range of causes from entrepreneurship to human rights to disaster relief.
Pam Omidyar is Founder and Chair of the Board of Humanity United, which she established in 2005 with Pierre's support. Humanity United is a philanthropic organization committed to building peace and advancing human freedom by leading, supporting, and collaborating with organizations that also envision a world free of conflict and injustice. Pam is also the chair and founder of HopeLab, a nonprofit organization that combines the highest standards of scientific research with innovative solutions to improve the health and quality of life for young people with chronic illness. Pam co-founded Omidyar Network with her husband, eBay founder Pierre Omidyar. Since 2004, Omidyar Network has invested more than $450 million in organizations that help catalyze economic and social change in areas such as microfinance, property rights, and government transparency. Pam also serves as a board member of USA for UNHCR, and Tufts University’s Tisch College of Public Service, and is a member of the advisory group for The Elders.
The Pew Charitable Trusts
The sons and daughters of Sun Oil Company founder Joseph N. Pew and his wife Mary Anderson Pew honored their parents more than six decades ago by creating an institution committed to serving the public interest through the power of knowledge. Employing the family’s entrepreneurial spirit, The Pew Charitable Trusts applies a rigorous, analytical approach to improve policy, stimulate civic life, and inform the public. The organization works with a diverse range of partners, including donors, public and private organizations and concerned citizens, who share a dedication to research-driven problem-solving and goal-oriented investment to meet some of society’s greatest challenges.
Still firmly rooted in its home in Philadelphia, Pew is now active around the globe, applying fact-based solutions to such areas as the environment, health, and consumer safety, and in addressing state and economic issues. Its research has provided insight into political and social trends, and has guided policymakers in making informed decisions that benefit the public today and the generations to come.
The Pritzker Family
The Pritzkers have lived and worked in Chicago for over a hundred years. Nicholas immigrated with his family in 1881. Philanthropy has been at the core of their family culture for four generations. They have said that rather than seeing philanthropy as a responsibility, they see it as an opportunity to give back to their community and to society.
The Pritzkers’ giving has tended to focus on their areas of passion. As a result, their philanthropy has come in the form of time, creativity, and money.
On a national and international scale, the Pritzkers created and sponsored both the Pritzker Architecture Prize and the Pritzker Neuropsychiatric Consortium. The former seeks to raise our awareness of the importance of architecture to our community and to our individual lives. The latter is a uniquely organized scientific effort that seeks to better understand the neurobiological and genetic causes of three major psychiatric disorders – major depressive disorder, bipolar disorder, and schizophrenia.
In Chicago, their activities cover a wide range of activities including health, education, the arts, and other civic activities.