Millionaire Wants to Play Billionaire

February 25, 2011 at 6:33 PM Leave a comment

The new “venture philanthropists” are often lauded for the investment not only of their money but their attention, as they seek to ensure accountability and results in their charitable works as they did in their business life.

This approach has its critics in the nonprofit sector, who often chafe under the direction of “control freak” donors. The Wall Street Journal today highlights a particularly risible example:

Robert G. Burton, a 72-year-old publishing entrepreneur, demanded that the University of Connecticut return more than $3 million in donations and take his name off a campus building because he didn’t get a say in the hiring of a new football coach.

In a six-page letter to the school’s athletic director, copied to the governor, Mr. Burton wrote that he wanted to be involved in hiring the new coach. “For someone who has given $7,000,000 to the football program/university I do not feel as though these requests were asking for too much.”

This isn’t philanthropy; this is a moneyed weasel who wants to play Jerry Jones with his state’s university. Send his money back.


Entry filed under: General.

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News about philanthropy and the charitable instinct


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