The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation announced Wednesday that it will add four new members to its board of trustees. It's a first for the Seattle-based philanthropic giant, whose decision making has been guided by very few hands since its incorporation in 2000.
Wednesday's announcement means the global charitable group will now have six people to guide its work and its $50 billion endowment. The new additions include Gates Foundation CEO Mark Suzman and Zimbabwean telecoms billionaire Strive Masiyiwa. Also, the African Union's COVID-19 vaccine envoy, economist Minouche Shafik and Thomas J. Tierney, the co-founder and co-chair of the influential philanthropic consulting firm The Bridgespan Group.
As the Wall Street Journal reports, the changes will allow the organization to add more governance, as well as independence, to the foundation, considered one of the world's largest philanthropic organizations. The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has an endowment of over $50 billion.
After their divorce, Bill Gates and Melinda French Gates remained co-chairs, but the foundation has not had additional trustees after the death of Bill Gates Sr. in 2020, and another major donor, Warren Buffett. He resigned in 2021, the Wall Street Journal reported.