Intel co-founder Gordon E. Moore and his wife Betty have established a new multibillion dollar family foundation to focus on education, scientific research and the environment. The Gordon E. and Betty I. Moore Foundation will be headquartered in San Francisco and will begin operations early in the new year.
Lewis W. Coleman will leave his post as chairman of Banc of America Securities to become President of the new foundation.
Coleman said the Foundation will bring a "venture investment" philosophy to its grantmaking. "We want to find good opportunities which, though they may be a bit riskier, offer the possibility of higher returns." He said in general these will be projects not ordinarily funded by conventional sources such as government agencies. "We will look for those projects that can really make a substantial contribution to the quality of life and the health of the planet."
Coleman brings to the position a reputation as an outside-the-box thinker with a record of personal involvement in environmental and education matters and over 30 years experience as a successful executive. In addition to heading Banc of America Securities, one the country's leading investment banking firms, he served as vice-chairman and Chief Financial Officer of Bank of America, Director of its World Banking Group, and Chairman of the Credit Policy Committee of Wells Fargo Bank. He holds a degree in Economics from Stanford University and serves on a number of boards.
Coleman said staffing is underway now. "We hope to assemble a diverse group of thoughtful people who are passionate about making a difference. We want them out scouring the world for the best projects -- not waiting for grant seekers to come to us, but going out and finding the projects we ought to be supporting."
"Gordon and Betty Moore have made an extremely generous gift to the world. We hope and expect that we can use this gift to make a difference on matters of fundamental importance to us all. I am very pleased to have been asked to head the Foundation and very excited about its potential."
Gordon Moore said, "The key to establishing the foundation was finding the right person to build and run it. Lew brings the energy and excitement needed along with outstanding executive credentials and passion for our areas of interest. Betty and I are thrilled that he is willing to take on this challenge."
Coleman anticipates the first year of operations to be largely start-up -- organizing staff, setting grant request and review procedures, becoming visible to the people with ideas and projects that should be brought to the Foundation's attention, though grants will be made as rapidly as qualifying projects are approved.
The Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation was established in September 2000 to create positive outcomes for future generations. The Foundation funds outcome-based grants and initiatives to achieve significant and measurable results. Grantmaking supports the Foundation's principal areas of interest: global environmental conservation, science, and the San Francisco Bay Area.