Robert F. Smith’s gift of paying off the student loans of Morehouse College’s 2019 graduating class stunned the students and faculty. The gift is estimated at $20 million to $40 million. https://lat.ms/2WmRGzO
Smith is the nation’s richest African American — ahead of Oprah Winfrey — with a net worth of $5 billion. https://lat.ms/2WmRGzO
Smith is a prolific philanthropist. In 2016, Smith became the first African American to be named chairman of Carnegie Hall. At a gala last fall for the City of Hope, Smith was the largest individual donor, with a gift of $500,000. https://lat.ms/2WmRGzO
As his success and wealth grew, Smith maintained a low profile. Now, he’s more comfortable with his public profile in part because he wants young African Americans to see what he’s accomplishing. https://lat.ms/2WmRGzO
Though the most prestigious historically black colleges and universities have thrived in recent years, many others are struggling to stay afloat. @kurtisalee and @jaweedkaleem explored the challenges facing Bennett College and other HBCUs: https://lat.ms/2W0FfWE
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