The Richest Women In The World And Their Charitable Causes

Though not so many in number, these women billionaires are making strides to provide a positive change in the world.

This year, 369 out of 2,781 billionaires (13.3%) are women, which is 32 more than last year. All together, their wealth amounts to almost $1.8 trillion.

Out of the top 10 richest women in the world, nine inherited their fortune from parents or spouses. MacKenzie Scott received her fortune after her divorce with Amazon Jeff Bezos. Soon after, she pledged to give away most of her wealth to charity.

READ ALSO: Enriching Education: 3 Billionaires Whose Donations Are Providing Accessible Education

The women in this list have made an impact through their philanthropic efforts. Here are just some of the causes they’ve supported over the years.

MacKenzie Scott

Net worth: $35.6 billion

After her divorce from Jeff Bezos in 2019, Scott got 4% of Amazon. In March this year, she gave away $640 million to 361 nonprofit organizations. This means she has given a total of $17.3 billion throughout her life.

Mackenzie Scott
Photo by Elena Seibert via Instagram @mackenziescott2020

Championing charities that support education, health, gender justice, and other critical issues, Scott employs a “no-strings-attached” form of giving. This means the nonprofits she chooses to donate to have full control over how to use the funds.

Jacqueline Mars

Net worth: $38.5 billion

Jacqueline Mars owns Mars Incorporated along with her brother John Mars, and her late brother Forrest Jr.’s four daughters. The candy and pet food company owns popular brands such as M&Ms, Snickers, and Pedigree dog food.

In 1982, she joined the company and spent a majority of her time working for the philanthropic nonprofit, the Mars Foundation. She also serves on the board of the National Archives and was formerly on the board of the Washington National Opera. She has also donated to the League of Conservation Voters, the National Air and Space Museum, and the Washington Performing Arts Society.

Julia Koch

Net worth: $64.3 billion

Julia Koch and her three children inherited a 42% stake of Koch Industries after her husband, David Koch, passed away. The conglomerate has businesses involving petroleum, medical technology, paper towels, and many more.

She is now the president of the David H. Koch Foundation which supports diverse causes involving science and medical research, education, the arts, and more. Earlier this year, she donated $75 million to NYU Langone Health, funding a new medical office tower in West Palm Beach, Florida.

Alice Walton

Net worth: $72.3 billion

Alice Walton, daughter of Walmart founder Sam Walton, is the richest woman in America. Instead of sitting on the board of the retail giant, she worked in finance and focused on the arts. Her love for art began at an early age, cultivated by her mother.

In 2017, she founded the Alice L. Walton Foundation which aims to promote the arts, education, health, and improving economic opportunity. In 2021, Walton announced that she will be building a nonprofit medical school in Bentonville called the Alice L. Walton School of Medicine. The school’s doors are set to open in 2025.

Françoise Bettencourt Meyers

Net worth: $99.5 billion

The L’Oréal heiress has been the richest woman in the world for four consecutive years now. She has served on the company’s board since 1997 and is chairwoman of the family holding company. She is also president of her family’s philanthropic foundation.

The Bettencourt Schueller Foundation aims to contribute to a better French society and boost France’s international influence through life sciences, the arts, and an inclusive society. After a fire severely damaged the Notre Dame in Paris, Bettencourt Meyers and L’Oréal pledged $226 million to help repair the cathedral.

Banner image via Wikimedia Commons.

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