NET WORTH: Unknown
SOURCE OF WEALTH: Warner Bros. Records
FUNDING AREAS: Higher Education, Arts and Culture.
OVERVIEW: Mo Ostin moves his philanthropy through the Ostin Family Foundation. Ostin has given the largest sums to his alma mater, UCLA, where he's funded a music center, and more recently bankrolled a new basketball center.
BACKGROUND: Mo Ostin was an economics major at UCLA, and after graduation took a job at Clef Records, which later became Verve. In the late 1950s, Frank Sinatra tried to buy Verve Records. Sinatra was so impressed by the company's artists and management that he formed his own company, Reprise, and hired Ostin to head it. Reprise was sold to Warner Bros. After heading Warner Bros.' Reprise division, Ostin was named president of the combined Warner Bros./Reprise operation. He was later appointed chairman/CEO, aposition he held until the mid 1990s. During Ostin's time, the likes of Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Ella Fitzgerald, Louis Armstrong, Miles Davis, Black Sabbath and others were signed to Warner Bros. or its affiliated labels.
EDUCATION: Mo Ostin's philanthropy has heavily featured higher education, particularly at his alma mater UCLA. A few years ago, Ostin gave a $10 million gift to establish the Evelyn and Mo Ostin Music Center. The Ostin Music Center includes a high-tech recording studio, spaces for rehearsal and teaching, a cafe and social space for students, and an Internet-based music production center. More recently, Ostin made a $10 million commitment to UCLA's new on-campus basketball training and performance facility, to be known as the Mo Ostin Basketball Center. The Ostin family, via their foundation, have also supported places like Pitzer College in suburban Los Angeles, and Silverlake Conservatory of Music.
ARTS & CULTURE: Of late via his foundation, Ostin has focused particularly on supporting LA><ART an "independent, nonprofit art space showcasing contemporary & experimental art, lectures & events."
OTHER: Grantees have included We Are Family Foundation (WAFF), an outfit founded in the wake of 9/11 by musician Nile Rodgers, who aimed to create and support "programs that inspire and educate people about mutual respect, understanding, and appreciation of cultural diversity while striving to solve global problems." Ostin's son, Michael, sits on the board of WAFF.
LOOKING FORWARD: Ostin is in his nineties, and his largest sums have gone to UCLA. Expect this to hold for the time being, though the foundation should be watched as it shifts into the next generation of philanthropy. Ostin's son, Michael, has also worked in the music business.
The Ostin Family Foundation does not provide a clear avenue for getting in touch but provided is an address and Ostin's attorney's email.
Ostin Family Foundation
16255 Ventura Blvd., No. 1250
Encino, CA 91436