Jeff Bezos Donates $100 Million to Longoria and Retired Admiral for Unrestricted Use

Highlighting philanthropy's impact on education and community development.

by Nouman Rasool
Jeff Bezos Donates $100 Million to Longoria and Retired Admiral for Unrestricted Use
© Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images

Amazon's founder Jeff Bezos, alongside his fiancée Lauren Sánchez, has generously bestowed a $100 million award to distinguished individuals making remarkable societal contributions. This year's illustrious recipients are retired Navy Admiral Bill McRaven and acclaimed actress Eva Longoria, each being granted $50 million through Bezos's Courage and Civility Award.

This initiative, launched in 2021 by Bezos, whose fortune is estimated at approximately $200 billion, aims to bolster philanthropic endeavors across the globe. The award has previously honored notable personalities such as Van Jones, a lawyer and CNN commentator, and José Andrés, a celebrated chef and humanitarian, underscoring the award's prestige in recognizing individuals who not only champion but also enact significant social change.

Bezos expressed the award's ethos, emphasizing the importance of unity, civility, and constructive dialogue in today's often divided society.

Longoria's Empowering Mission

Eva Longoria, renowned for her role in "Desperate Housewives" and her subsequent achievements as a director, CEO of UnbeliEVAble Entertainment, and a political activist, plans to utilize the award to further the missions of The Eva Longoria Foundation and Eva’s Heroes.

Longoria's foundation is dedicated to empowering Latinas through education and entrepreneurship, reflecting her commitment to fostering community and national improvement through supporting women and families. Admiral McRaven, celebrated for his leadership in the 2011 operation that led to the demise of Osama bin Laden, intends to apply the funds towards developing educational programs for future military leaders and supporting the children of fallen veterans, as well as enhancing mental health services for those in military service.

McRaven's dedication to the welfare of veterans and their families exemplifies the profound impact of the award on individuals dedicated to public service. As Bezos embarks on a mission to distribute a significant portion of his wealth within his lifetime, his philanthropic initiatives have expanded, including a substantial commitment to combat climate change through the Bezos Earth Fund and support for homeless families via the Bezos Day 1 Families Fund.

Despite criticism regarding the extent of his philanthropic impact, Bezos's recent gestures highlight an ongoing commitment to leveraging his resources for positive societal change, sparking discussions on the role of wealth in addressing global challenges.

Jeff Bezos