Buffett son's foundation commits $90 million to help U.S. women of color

Reuters News
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Posted: Mar 23, 2016 1:29 PM

(Reuters) - A charitable foundation run by billionaire Warren Buffett's youngest son on Wednesday said it will spend $90 million to improve the lives of girls and young women of color in the United States.

The NoVo Foundation, created in 2006 by Peter Buffett and his wife, Jennifer, said its seven-year commitment is the largest by a private foundation to address inequities facing female minorities in the country.

NoVo said its staff will meet over the next several months with young women, advocates and activists in the U.S. South, Southwest and Midwest regions to hear their concerns, and enlist partners in New York, Washington, D.C., New Orleans and elsewhere to hold similar meetings.

Challenges affecting female minorities in particular include poverty, sexual abuse and harassment, and education, NoVo said. The funding process would begin in early 2017.

"Our goal is to create the conditions for change by advancing the work of the real experts in this movement: girls and young women of color and the advocates working with them," Peter Buffett said in a statement.

"Novo" is a Latin word that can mean to refresh, revive, change or invent.

The NoVo Foundation is based in New York and ended 2014 with $407.2 million in net assets, after accounting for liabilities.

It receives large annual donations, in the form of Berkshire Hathaway Inc stock, from Warren Buffett, as part of his plan to give away nearly all his wealth.

Warren Buffett has run Berkshire, a conglomerate with close to 90 businesses such as Geico car insurance, Dairy Queen ice cream and the BNSF railroad, since 1965.

(Reporting by Jonathan Stempel in New York; Editing by Bill Trott)