SEATTLE--(The Charles and Lisa Simonyi Fund for Arts and Sciences, announced his ten-year-old foundation has achieved its ambitious goal to distribute more than $100 million to significant cultural and charitable organizations which demonstrate excellence in the arts, sciences and education.)--Charles Simonyi, high-tech pioneer, space traveler, philanthropist and founder of
“I remain grateful to Susan for her leadership and guidance”
“Today, we have fulfilled our mission and are proud to have partnered with these outstanding organizations to help them realize their goals,” said Simonyi, along with his wife Lisa Persdotter Simonyi, and Simonyi Fund Executive Director Susan Hutchison. Hutchison has been at the helm of the foundation from its inception.
“I remain grateful to Susan for her leadership and guidance,” Simonyi continued. “Without her steady hand, deep roots in this community and her understanding of philanthropy, we could not have made the difference that we did.”
“It has been both a professional and personal joy to be part of this wonderful effort with Lisa and Charles,” said Hutchison. “We were able to make a profound impact both here in Seattle and around the world and I am grateful to have been part of a lasting legacy that is wide, deep and true.”
From its beginning in 2003, The Simonyi Fund followed a different model of giving, Hutchison noted. Simonyi stated clearly that his intent was to distribute his funds within ten years, paying out of the corpus or contributed funds, instead of limiting spending to foundation investment returns, as most foundations do. “This allowed us to make significant grants every year for ten years,” said Hutchison.
The Simonyi Fund’s first major gift was a $10M grant to the Seattle Symphony in early 2004 to celebrate that organization’s 100th anniversary. Other major gifts included a $3.5M donation to the Seattle Public Library Foundation in 2004, $3M to help construct the Charles Simonyi Space Gallery at Seattle’s Museum of Flight, $20 million to the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope (LSST) and the $25 million Karoly Simonyi Memorial Endowment Fund at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, New Jersey, presented in 2005 to honor the philanthropist’s late father.
In addition, the Fund has provided grants for other organizations around the world, including the Russian National Orchestra, the Metropolitan Opera Radio Broadcasts, Ancient Egypt Research Associates (AERA), Louisiana Museum of Modern Art in Denmark and many charities in Charles Simonyi’s childhood country of Hungary.
“I’m very pleased with our work for the past ten years. I am currently focusing my efforts on my business, Intentional Software Corporation and my growing family,” added Simonyi.
For more information regarding the Charles and Lisa Simonyi Fund for Arts and Sciences, or to schedule an interview with Charles and Lisa Simonyi or Susan Hutchison, contact Lee Keller at 206-799-3805 or by email at Lee@thekellergroup.com.