Friday, October 10, 2008

Family makes 200K a year and gives most of it away

MORNING READ: How rich is rich? The Hsieh family donates most of its earnings to others.
By LORI BASHEDA- The Orange County Register

Who on earth would make $200,000, and give away all but $48,000 of it?

Who would hunker down in the hood when they can afford the heights?

Tom and Bree Hsieh. That's who.

The couple belongs to a club made up of people who donate at least half their salary to charity for at least three years straight.

It's called the 50 % League and it grew out of Bolder Giving, an organization started in 2007 by Boston suburb philanthropists Anne and Christopher Ellinger. The mission: To encourage people to publicly proclaim their stories of giving in hopes that it inspires others to give boldly.the 120 club members are millionaires, often folks who inherited giant sums of money and, feeling either burdened or guilty or unbelievably generous, decided to give most or all of it away.

Folks like John Hunting, who is quoted on the Bolder Giving website, saying this gem: "When I got a $130 million windfall in 1998, I decided to give it away quickly."

But as admirable as that is, its one thing to give away windfalls when you're still left with enough money to live comfortably (Hunting kept $10 million). It's another thing to give away so much money that you wind up wearing 99 cent thrift store ties to corporate meetings. Cheerfully, we might add.


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