Los Angeles-based philanthropist Eli Broad, 84, is set to retire from the foundation that bears his name.
The New York Times reported his intended retreat from the Eli and Edythe Broad Foundation, which Broad announced on Thursday. “I am retiring,” Broad told reporters Adam Nagourney and Adam Popescu. “Now. Right now. I am just tired. I want to spend more time with my family. Catch up on my reading.”
Broad is best-known for his contributions to the artistic and cultural landscape of Los Angeles, most notably the Broad Museum, a museum of contemporary art that opened in 2015, and the Walt Disney Concert Hall, home to the Los Angeles Philharmonic. Broad co-founded the Broad Museum with his wife Edythe, and co-organized the fundraising drive that allowed the construction of the Frank Gehry-designed Disney Hall. Yet the Broad Foundation’s work has also focused on science and education; Broad told The Times that he took the greatest personal pride in the Foundation’s contributions in both of those areas.
Broad, a member of the 2015 Forward 50, was born in the Bronx to Lithuanian Jewish parents. Prior to directing his full focus to his philanthropic ventures in 2000, Broad was first an accountant, then the co-founder of the construction company KB Home, then the CEO of the insurance company SunAmerica, which merged with AIG in 1998.
Broad’s exit has been in the works for some time. Gerun Riley, now 41, became president of the Broad Foundation in 2016. Joanne Heyler, the Broad Museum’s founding director and the Broad Art Foundation’s director and chief curator, will continue her work in both capacities. As The Times reported, the Foundation currently has a $2.5 billion endowment. Broad, who has pledged to donate 75% of his wealth, has already donated or promised to donate $4 billion during his lifetime.