Melinda French Gates to Resign From Gates Foundation

Melinda French Gates is resigning as co-chair of the non-profit organization, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. 

Gates co-founded the foundation with her then-husband, Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates, 24 years ago, stayed on after their divorce in 2021. The foundation, one of the largest charitable foundation’s in the world, has given out more than $77 billion in grants, with focus areas including vaccination, particularly around COVID-19, healthcare and poverty around the world. 

Melinda Gates said Monday, in a statement on X, that she wants to “move forward into the next chapter” of her philanthropy.  Upon her departure from the foundation, on June 7, Gates said she will receive $12.5 billion which she will use to further her work on behalf of women and families. She founded her own organization, Pivotal Ventures, in 2015 to help address problems impacting U.S. women and families

“This is not a decision I came to lightly. I am immensely proud of the foundation that Bill and I built together and of the extraordinary work it is doing to address inequities around the world. I care deeply about the foundation team, our partners around the world,” Gates said in a statement. 

“This is a critical moment for women and girls in the U.S. and around the world — and those fighting to protect and advance equality are in urgent need of support. Under the terms of my agreement with bill, in leaving the foundation, I will have an additional $12.5 billion to commit to my work on behalf of women and families. I’ll be sharing more about what that will look like in the near future,” she continued. 

Upon her departure, the organization will change its name to the Gates Foundation, and Bill Gates will become the sole chair. Gates will not be bringing any of the foundation’s work with her,  the foundation’s CEO, Mark Suzman, said Monday.

In a statement posted on X, Bill Gates thanked Melinda for her work and reiterated his commitment to the foundation. 

“I want to thank Melinda for her critical contributions to the Foundation from its very beginning. As a co-founder and co-chair Melinda has been instrumental in shaping our strategies and initiatives, significantly impacting global health and gender equality,” Gates wrote. 

“Looking ahead, I remain fully committed to the Foundation’s work across all our strategies, and to realizing the opportunities we have to continue improving the lives of millions around the world,” he continued. 


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