Henry Samueli

NET WORTH: $3 billion


FUNDING AREAS: Health, Education, Youth Services, Social Services, Jewish Community, Southern California Community

OVERVIEW: Samueli may not be one of the richest people in Silicon Valley, but he's among the most generous, having donated more than $280 million to various philanthropic endeavors through the Samueli Foundation, and the Broadcom Foundation. He tends to give larger donations to higher education and cancer research, but also supports organizations in Orange County, California, particularly Jewish community organizations.

BACKGROUND: Henry Samueli is probably best known as one of the cofounders of Broadcom Corp., or as the outspoken owner of the Anaheim Ducks NHL hockey team.

PHILOSOPHY: When Samuelli and his wife created their family foundation, they described it as a grantmaking institution with one overriding purpose: "to create societal value by investing in innovative, entrepreneurial and sustainable ideas." Applying capitalist notions to charitable causes, Samuelli sees his donations as investments, but although he is a proponent of "philanthrocapitalism," he does tend to make a lot of more conventional donations as well. Samueli believes that education is the key to learning how to give. When he signed the Giving Pledge, he said he was moved to sign it because he wanted to network with other philanthropists, and learn of different ways to give back to the community.


EDUCATION: One of the first things Samuelli did after Broadcom went public in 1998, was to give $30 million to his alma mater, UCLA, to support what came to be called the Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science, where he once served as department head. The Samueli Foundation gave $10 million for 20 new endowed engineering faculty chairs in a recent year.

Samueli gave another $20 million to UC Irvine in his home of Orange County, California, to establish the Henry Samueli School of Engineering. Samueli has been on the faculty at UCLA since 1985 and is an adjunct professor at UC Irvine. 

HEALTH AND ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE: Samueli has a passion for medical research, and helped establish the Center for Integrative Medicine at UC Irvine. He has also given massive amounts of support to the John Wayne Cancer Institute, which has made a lot of progress in the area of cancer prevention and treatment, and established the Samueli Institute for Information Biology based in Washington, D.C. Like the John Wayne Institute, the Samueli Institute seeks to make major inroads into cancer research.

SOCIAL SERVICES: The Samueli foundation has supported the Orangewood Children’s Foundation, Court Appointed Special Advocates, Kidworks Hillview Acres, Canyon Acres, the Children’s Bureau, ChildShare, and other social service agencies.

JEWISH COMMUNITY: Samueli's Jewish heritage has a major impact on his philanthropy. He donated a hefty amount that led to the creation of the Sala and Aron Samueli Holocaust Memorial Library at Chapman University, which opened and was dedicated to his parents in 2005. He has also directed major gifts to Irvine-based Jewish Community Center and Tarbut V'Torah Community Day School.