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The Quiet Philanthropy of Hedge Fund Billionaire Bruce Kovner

Juilliard Holds 104th Commencement Ceremony

Many hedge fund managers make a lot of noise, particularly activist investors who will do anything, including threaten lawsuits to try to affect company decisions. Many even toot their own horns as philanthropists. Billionaires’ names are often in the press and repeated with adulation and envy, but a few manage to go unnoticed …. by choice.

Bruce Kovner, former manager and founder of Caxton Associates, has a net worth of $5 billion, much of which he donates to education and the arts. Kovner has a long-standing interest in culture because of his forays into life as a writer. He left his PhD program and Harvard because of writer’s block, drove cabs and studied at Julliard in his quest to fulfill his dream and write books, but started his New York-based hedge fund instead. It was founded in 1983, and Kovner left in 2012.

Since then, he has been directing his efforts providing scholarships for underprivileged children to attend private schools, has been a staunch supporter of charter schools. The Kovners have donated $200, 000 to the Foundation for Education Reform and $450, 000 to the Foundation for Excellence in Education. The Kovners have also been major supporters of Julliard, which has received millions in donations from the family through the years.


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