In Articles on October 18, 2012 at 4:05 pm
Ecstatic children shriek with delight, piercing the summer humidity. Around a bend in a curving arbor, a playground comes into view. Several dozen kids scurry about, ignoring the summer heat. The first play area features a 15-foot slide, a tower, and a hand-operated fountain. From there, a footpath winds toward a huge bowl of slides and rope ladders, and then loops away to another play circle, where kids swing from maypoles. Curve again, and you see Swiss Family Robinson–style treehouses connected by a suspended rope mesh.
The playground is one of the newest features at Shelby Farms Park, one of America’s largest urban parks. Near the playground, but just inside the shade, chatty parents keep one eye on their kids. Past a stand of mature trees is Pine Lake, where a family unloads a cooler and starts to suspend a piñata. Read the rest of this entry »
In Articles on July 1, 2012 at 10:04 am
New York City
David Koch has George Eastman on his mind. “You know the Eastman story, don’t you?” he asks as he leans his six-foot-five-inch frame onto a large chenille sofa. Over his right shoulder, the view goes uptown along Madison Avenue.
He begins to relate the story of the entrepreneur who founded Eastman Kodak. “He put up the money—anonymously—to acquire property for MIT across the Charles River from Boston. He had a condition that his donation for the land and to put up the major buildings not be disclosed until after his death. He was an amazing guy.”
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In Articles on January 1, 2012 at 8:46 am
How does a country that loses up to 20 percent of its population to genocide heal the scars of hatred? Perhaps more concretely, how does a country like that deal with the challenge of criminal justice when 2 percent of its population is in prison for perpetrating genocide—killing their one-time friends and neighbors?
These very questions vexed leaders in Rwanda. Families and communities needed to heal and rebuild, and the criminal justice system would never be able to deal with the backlog of genocide trials.
Rwanda opted for the path of forgiveness. Read the rest of this entry »
In Articles on January 1, 2012 at 8:40 am
“Hold on,” says John Montgomery as he answers the phone at his desk. “I’m going to go to a conference room where it’s a bit quieter. We have an open office concept here.”
The open office is a small part of Montgomery’s powerful sense of openness and equality. He’s the founding partner of Bridgeway, an investment management firm based in Houston. It’s not a typical financial firm. Among its 30 employees—Montgomery calls them all partners—there is a seven-to-one compensation cap: the highest-earning partner makes no more than seven times the salary of the lowest-earning partner. Read the rest of this entry »
In Articles on July 1, 2011 at 10:26 pm
“It’s been banned; it’s been burned,” says Steve Green. “It’s been loved and hated. It’s the best-selling book of all time, the most-translated book of all time, and, I think, the most important book of all time.” He is referring, of course, to the Bible.
Green is president of Hobby Lobby, a nationwide chain of arts-and-crafts stores founded by his father, David. The Good Book informs his family’s business and inspires their philanthropy. It is also the centerpiece of their latest charitable project: the creation of the country’s first museum devoted to telling the story of how the Bible came to be, recounting its effects on the world, and relating its message. Read the rest of this entry »
In Articles on May 6, 2011 at 3:28 pm
New York City
“Scary,” says Marilyn Fedak. She looks out the window from her corner office. Outside, a winter storm is raging. Whirling snow obscures the view of the Empire State Building and Rockefeller Center from her 39th-floor windows. In a few hours, the heavy snowfall will snarl travel and down power lines from D.C. to Boston. She pauses for a moment.
“It was so scary,” Fedak explains. “It’s not like I haven’t been through bear markets before. But this one was different. I don’t think people realize how close we came to the system breaking down. I felt like everything I had learned about the markets and investing over 40 years wasn’t working as it should.” Read the rest of this entry »
In Articles on March 18, 2011 at 8:52 am
Gretchen Reed loves to fly. She owns not one, not two, but eighteen restored, antique aircraft—many of which are still flown. She’s especially fond of her Aeronca Champion, a classic, two-seat, single-engine, fixed-gear airplane, flown from her own, private airport in northeastern Ohio.
Reed is not only an avid aviatrix. With the gift of her airport and collection to Lake Erie College in Ohio, she has proven herself an avid philanthropist. Read the rest of this entry »
In Articles on February 1, 2011 at 2:48 pm
As a cardinal flies, it’s only three miles from a modest tobacco farm near Ellerbe Creek to the campus of Duke University. Today, a traveler can cover the distance in about 10 minutes, entirely within the city limits of Durham, North Carolina.
That otherwise unremarkable distance marks the journey of James B. Duke. Born on a small homestead, and interred in the chapel of the university that bears his name, Duke was a man of the Carolinas.
No matter what else he became, James B. Duke remained a man of the Carolinas. Read the rest of this entry »