David H. Koch Charitable Foundation and Personal Philanthropy
On May 20, 2015, David H. Koch announced a gift of $150 million to Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center. The donation is the largest gift the center has received to date and will go toward building a state-of-the-art outpatient medical facility.
David H. Koch earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in chemical engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He joined Koch Industries, Inc. in 1970 and today serves as an executive vice president and board member. As chairman and president of Koch Membrane Systems, Inc., his passion for water technology has led to clean water innovations that have been exhibited at the International Desalination Association World Congress. Koch Membrane Systems is part of Koch Chemical Technology Group, LLC, a subsidiary of Koch Industries, Inc.
A long-time philanthropist, Mr. Koch has given generously to a variety of organizations and programs. In his lifetime, he and the David H. Koch Charitable Foundation have pledged or contributed more than $1.2 billion to cancer research, medical centers, educational institutions, arts and cultural institutions, and to assist public policy organizations.
Medical & Cancer Research
A prostate cancer survivor, Mr. Koch has donated $100 million as prime contributor for the David H. Koch Institute for Integrative Cancer Research at MIT. Other pledges and contributions for medical and cancer research includes:
In 2011, Mr. Koch received the Humanitarian of the Year award from the American Apparel and Footwear Association for his long-standing support of organizations working to find a cure for prostate cancer. The awards gala raised more than $1.1 million for the Prostate Cancer Foundation. In 2007, he was honored with the Double Helix Medal for Corporate Leadership from Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory for supporting research that, “improves the health of people everywhere.”
Education & Science
Mr. Koch supports science-related projects including funding the long-running PBS documentary series, “Nova,” and a science and technology center at Deerfield Academy in Massachusetts.
A $35 million pledge to the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History will renovate the dinosaur hall, which will be named after him. Once renovated, the hall will showcase the museum's unrivaled collection of 46 million fossils, including one of the largest and most complete T. rex specimens in the world. His $15 million gift to the museum created the David H. Koch Hall of Human Origins that opened in 2010. The 15,000-square-foot exhibit helps answer the question, “What does it mean to be human?“
Other education and science-related support includes:
Arts & Culture
The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s new, completely redesigned David H. Koch Plaza opened to the public in September 2014 following a major two-year reconstruction effort. Mr. Koch’s $65 million gift to the museum helped create a beautiful outdoor setting with new fountains, landscaping and improved access, all designed with sustainability in mind.
Gifts from the David H. Koch Charitable Foundation have benefited the American Ballet Theater. In 2008, his foundation gave $100 million for the preservation and renovation of the State Theater of New York at Lincoln Center. Now known as the David H. Koch Theater, it is home to the New York City Ballet and New York City Opera.
A passionate believer in free societies, Mr. Koch has funded research and education programs that analyze how freedom creates prosperity and advances social progress. He serves on the boards of the Cato Institute, Reason Foundation and Americans for Prosperity Foundation.