He is one of the richest men in the world, and George Soros is proactive about using his billions to support social causes that he believes are in the vital interest of disadvantaged people around the world.
His focus in often on social groups that lack the power they need to lead lives of economic, social and political equality.
The story of George Soros spans decades. Today at age 86 he has traced a path across the globe and decades to become one of the 30 richest people in the world. Born in Budapest, Hungary, to a middle-class Jewish family, he was 13 years old in 1944 when the Nazis invaded his home country. As a Jew he was barred from attending school under Nazi occupation.
Soros escaped Nazi-controlled Hungary after his parents purchased official papers to identify them as Christians. He survived the Siege of Budapest in 1945 and eventually immigrated to England where he enrolled in the London School of Economics. After graduating with a Bachelor’s degree he obtained a Master’s degree in philosophy.
Soros worked in banking for several years, and then established his first hedge fund in 1969. The fund was called Double Eagle. It was a success. George Soros used profits from Double Eagle to establish his second hedge fund, the Soros Fund Management in 1970.
His operation eventually evolved into the Quantum Fund which has gone on to build a portfolio of some $25 billion in assets — the majority of Soros’ net worth today. Know more on cnbc.com about George Soros.
Over the past decades, George Soros has given millions to wide-ranging causes, from environmental initiatives to political campaigns, along with numerous grassroots social movements.
A high-profile example of a Soros funding effort was prompted by a racially charged police shooting of a man in Ferguson, Missouri, in 2014. A white police officer shot and killed a young black man, 18-year-old Michael Brown, under circumstances that remain highly controversial.
Officer Wilson was cleared of wrongdoing in the incident but his acquittal incited outrage, rioting and protests, especially among the black community of Ferguson.
Violent arrest, including rioting, burnings and looting lasted for several days. The protests eventually calmed but an ongoing peaceful movement was spawned to focus on racial inequality, police harassment of minority groups and social injustice.
According to the Washington Times, Soros has given $33 million to support grass-roots, on-the-ground activists in Ferguson.
For George Soros, the Ferguson case illustrates a microcosm for larger issues of racial disparity, not only in the United States, but in locations around the world. It’s part of the reason why he continues to disperse millions from his personal fortune – to empower people who want a chance at a better life.