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Sunday, Sep 25, 2022

SDBJ Insider: San Diego Is Well Represented On Top Givers’ List

Vik Jolly
Irwin and Joan Jacobs

Two San Diego individuals and two couples have made The Chronicle of Philanthropy’s 2018 top 50 givers’ list, including two of the founders of Qualcomm Inc.

At No. 14 are Irwin and Joan Jacobs with $108.8 million donated to various causes. The Chronicle lists the Jacobses’ largest gift to Dunaway Foundation ($94.6 million) and to the Joan and Irwin Jacobs Fund at the Jewish Community Foundation of San Diego ($14.1 million).

Irwin Jacobs played a leading role in co-founding Linkabit and Qualcomm Inc. Linkabit specialized in satellite technology. Following its sale in 1980, Jacobs was one of the seven people who founded Qualcomm Inc. in 1985.

Tied for No. 22 is philanthropist and banker T. Denny Sanford with $100 million gifted. Last June, Sanford made the landmark gift to the San Diego-based National University System to expand Sanford Harmony, a social emotional learning program.

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At No. 30 with nearly $68 million donated for human services causes are Ernest and Evelyn Rady of La Jolla. Their largest gifts went to The Salvation Army ($50 million to help homeless families and individuals); Rady Family Foundation ($10.5 million); Ernest and Evelyn Rady Donor Advised Fund at the Goldman Sachs Philanthropy Fund ($7 million); and other groups ($480,000).

Rounding out the four top San Diego philanthropists and coming in at No. 34 is Andrew Viterbi with $55 million gifted to higher education causes. Viterbi, also a co-founder of Linkabit and Qualcomm Inc., gave $50 million to UC San Diego Health’s ophthalmology department and $5 million to other groups.

In all, the country’s biggest donors gave a combined $7.8 billion to nonprofits in 2018, according to the Chronicle. At No. 1 in the nation are Amazon founder Jeff Bezos and his wife MacKenzie Bezos with $2 billion given to human-services causes.

• • •

First Ballast Point. Now Cutwater Spirits. Ballast Point, the iconic San Diego craft brewery founded by Jack White, Pete A’Hearn and Yuseff Cherney, sold to New York-based marketing and beverage producer, Constellation Brands Inc., for about $1 billion in 2015. Cutwater Spirits, its distilling arm remained, with some of the same players involved.

Now Cutwater Spirits has been acquired by Anheuser-Busch, joining Budweiser, Bud Light, Michelob ULTRA and Stella Artois, among others. Terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

Staff writer Mariel Concepcion contributed to this report.


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