John Sall

NET WORTH: $4.2 billion


FUNDING AREAS: Health, Education, Environment, and Community Development

OVERVIEW: Sall, a signatory to the Giving Pledge, is a strong supporter of STEM education. Through the Sall Family Foundation, he and his wife, Ginger, have also demonstrated a strong interest in health and the environment.

BACKGROUND: Sall is the cofounder and executive vice president of the largest privately held software company in the world, SAS Institute Inc., but he still thinks of himself as no more than a "statistical software developer. 

SAS is known as one of the most employee-friendly companies in the world. Sall's philanthropy demonstrates a very generous commitment to issues that are important to him. He is a signatory to Warren Buffett's and Bill Gates's Giving Pledge, in which Sall promises to give most of his money to charity. 


ENVIRONMENT: Sall is a longtime supporter of the Nature Conservancy and even served on the organization's board of governors for nine years. He's also a staunch supporter of the World Wildlife Fund, giving more than $3 million to the organization. SAS has also supported Duke university, where Stall's wife sits on the board of advisors for the Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions.

HEALTH: Sall is a major donor to the Pan American Health Organization, which mobilizes partnerships to improve health and quality of life in the Americas, working with government agencies and non-profit organizations. He has given millions in support of its programs.

HUMANITARIAN EFFORTS: Sall has given at least $9.2 million to CARE USA, an organization that provides disaster relief and fights poverty throughout the world. With programs for empowering women, improving health, providing education, fighting hunger, and more, CARE allows Sall to support a variety of causes through a single organization. 

EDUCATION: Along with his SAS cofounder, Jim Goodnight, Sall committed himself to education through their founding of the Cary Academy in 1996. The Cary Academy is a private school that integrates technology into its entire curriculum to prepare students for the 21st century. The school features smaller class sizes and emphasizes the use of technology in the classroom as a part of its strong focus on science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) education. Upon enrollment, students are issued tablet computers. Before tablets, they were given laptops. The school's model has been adapted by a number of schools throughout North Carolina.

In addition, through SAS, Sall has helped guide the donations of tens of millions of dollars into education programs throughout North Carolina. These programs include the Triangle High Five, which supports "the development and sustainability of professional learning communities within the North Carolina Triangle Region and across the state."


  • John Phillip Sall, Chairman, Sall Family Foundation, 201 Vineyard Lane, Cary, NC 27513-3067, 919-677-8000
  • For general information, contact the Sall Family Foundation at