Following the launch and landing of Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin trip into space, the billionaire announced he would be awarding commentator Van Jones and chef and philanthropist José Andrés $100 million dollars each to use as they please.
During the press conference following his historic trip to space, Bezos made the announcement and said, “They can give it all to their own charity, or they can share the wealth. It is up to them.”
The awards are tied to what Bezos has coined the “Courage and Civility Award,” a philanthropic initiative awarded to those committed to unifying a “divisive” world.
Andrés, who owns two Michelin Star restaurants, has spent millions of dollars and resources to help feed the poor and needy before and during the pandemic. Andrés says the award is a “dream come true.”
Van Jones has founded and led several social justice initiatives including REFORM Alliance, Color of Change, the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights and the Dream Corps, which works to close prison doors and open doors of opportunity in the green and tech economies.
This post was written by Nsenga K. Burton, Ph.D., founder & editor-in-chief of The Burton Wire. Follow Nsenga on Twitter @Ntellectual.