NET WORTH: Unknown
SOURCE OF WEALTH: Goldman Sachs; Tiger Management
FUNDING AREAS: Education & Youth, Arts & Culture, Religion, Environment, Health & Human Services
OVERVIEW: John Townsend and his wife Marree conduct their philanthropy through the Townsend Family Foundation. The couple supports a broad range of causes, including education, the arts, religious organizations, the environment and health and human services. Funding priorities include the University of North Carolina and cultural organizations in New York City and Greenwich, Connecticut.
BACKGROUND: North Carolina native John L. Townsend III graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with BA and MBA degrees. Townsend joined Goldman Sachs in 1987 and served as a general partner from 1992 to 1999 and a managing director from 1999 to 2002. He went on to serve as managing partner and COO of Tiger Management and retired in 2015. Marree Shore Townsend is also a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and currently runs an interior design business in Connecticut.
EDUCATION & YOUTH: The Townsends are supportive of their mutual alma mater, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. In 2017 they committed $50 million to various initiatives at the university, including support for the College of Arts and Sciences, the Institute for the Arts and Humanities, the Kenan-Flagler Business School and the university’s athletics program. They have also supported the Faculty Fellows Program and established the Robert A. Shore Cystic Fibrosis Research Fund at the medical school in honor of Marree’s nephew, who died of the disease in 2013. Other grantees in the area of education include Teach for America, the Madeira School, REACH Prep, and Episcopal High School, where John Townsend is a trustee emeritus.
ARTS & CULTURE: John Townsend serves on the advisory board of University of North Carolina’s Ackland Art Museum. The couple has also supported the Frick Collection and the Second Stage Theater in New York City and the Greenwich Historical Society in Connecticut.
HEALTH & HUMAN SERVICES: The Townsends support health and human services broadly. Past grantees include the Breast Cancer Alliance, Meals on Wheels, Greenwich Hospital, and the Greenwich chapter of the United Way.
LOOKING FORWARD: The Townsends will likely continue to support the University of North Carolina as well as local organizations in their hometown of Greenwich, Connecticut.
The Townsend Family Foundation does not provide a clear avenue of contact, but an address and phone number are provided below:
The Townsend Family Foundation
Saratoga Springs, NY 12866