NET WORTH: $2.6 billion
SOURCE OF WEALTH: Elliott Management Corporation
FUNDING AREAS: Policy, LGBT Rights, Jewish Causes, Health
OVERVIEW: Paul Singer moves his philanthropy through the Paul E. Singer Foundation, which focuses on "supporting research and scholars in the areas of free-market economics, the rule of law, U.S. national security, and the future of Israel, as well as LGBT equality efforts and health-care delivery innovation."
BACKGROUND: Paul Singer was born and raised in New Jersey. He studied Psychology as an undergrad, then graduated to Harvard Law. He was a Wall Street lawyer at Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette for just three years before going into business. Singer is CEO of Elliott Management Corporation, a hedge fund he founded in 1977 with the $1.3 million he gathered from friends and family.
POLICY: Singer is a conservative libertarian who believes in free-market principles. He funds and chairs the board of trustees for the Manhattan Institute for Policy Research, a rightwing thinktank interested in promoting free market principles. Singer, via his foundation, has also supported outfits like Intelligence Squared US.
LGBT: Singer started the American Unity PAC with $1 million in initial funding, in order to "enourage Republican candidates to support same-sex marriage." The PAC has an innovative strategy: provide a financial safety net for politicians who fear their campaign funding will be withdrawn by anti-gay groups.
JEWISH CAUSES: Singer is a steady supporter of Jewish organizations, with a particular eye towards Israel. Grantees have included American Israel Education Foundation, Friends of Israel Defense Forces, Hebrew Language Charter Schools, Hillel: The Foundation for Jewish Campus Life, and Israel on Campus Coalition. Singer is also co-founder of Start-Up Nation Central, an "organization committed to solving global problems through deepening ties between Israel’s start-up ecosystem and the global innovation economy."
HEALTH: Grantees have included Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, Melanoma Research Alliance Foundation, and Dana Farber Cancer Institute.
LOOKING FORWARD: Singer has also directed millions to a donor advised fund, making the full scope of where is money is going hard to get a handle on. Still, expect plenty more money to move towards Singer's select interest areas in the coming years.