Billionaire and American novelist MacKenzie Scott gave to five East Tennessee associations as a feature of a push to rearrange her wealth to economically disadvantaged individuals this year.
“This pandemic has been a wrecking ball in the lives of Americans already struggling,” Scott wrote on Medium, where she announced her $4.2 billion donation to 384 organizations.
Scott donated to Second Harvest Food Banks of East Tennessee and Northeast Tennessee, Goodwill Industries of Knoxville, United Way of Greater Knoxville and the YWCA of Knoxville and the Tennessee Valley.
“Economic losses and health outcomes alike have been worse for women, for people of color, and for people living in poverty. Meanwhile, it has substantially increased the wealth of billionaires,” wrote Scott, who became the richest woman in the world after her divorce settlement with Jeff Bezos.
Bezos, who claims Amazon, has been the object of public scrutiny for hoarding wealth despite economic inequality.
Scott has parted with almost $6 billion this year.
As the police killings of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor started national discussions over racial injustice this summer, Scott parted with $1.7 billion to assorted associations, including historically black colleges and universities.
On Wednesday, Scott declared the $4.2 billion in extra endowments to associations throughout the most recent four months.
Scott said she requested a group from counselors to help her “accelerate” her giving through “immediate support to people suffering the economic effects of the crisis.”
The group used information to distinguish associations with strong leadership and results working in communities with high projected food insecurity, high measures of racial disparity, high local poverty rates and low access to philanthropic capital.
“Because our research is data-driven and rigorous, our giving process can be human and soft.”