Charles “Chuck” Feeney has amassed billions of dollars in wealth. However, he doesn’t own an opulent house, a car or a Rolex. He prefers taking cabs, riding the subway, or just walking when he’s in New York. He flies economy, even on international flights. And since the 1980s, he has given away his fortune to humanitarian and educational causes throughout the world. Preferring to give it all away while he is still alive, Feeney wants to better the lives of people around the world in the here and now.
Feeney, who made his fortune as the co-founder of the Duty Free Shoppers Group, founded Atlantic Philanthropies in 1982 as a channel for his donations. Since then, he has given close to $5 billion in grants, a practice in line with his personal philosophy of “giving while living.”
The announcement marks an effort to put the $1.83 billion in remaining funds to their most effective use, with $750 million already dedicated to existing projects. Atlantic Philanthropieswill then cease operations in 2020.