Where Does Nvidia CEO Jensen Huang Give Away His Billions?

Jensen Huang's net worth has skyrocketed to $110.4 billion from $3.8 billion five years ago.

Man in black leather jacket and glasses
Jensen Huang’s fortune has skyrocketed in 2024. Mohd Rasfan/AFP via Getty Images

Jensen Huang, CEO and founder of Nvidia (NVDA), is undoubtedly one of the biggest winners of the A.I. boom. Demand for his company’s graphics processing units (GPUs), which underpin A.I. products, has sent Huang’s fortune soaring to an estimated $110.4 billion and made him the 13th wealthiest person in the world—a far cry from the $3.8 billion net worth he possessed five years ago. Nvidia’s success has also boosted Huang’s philanthropic capacities, raising the assets of his philanthropic foundation from $13.2 million in 2007 to $1 billion as of 2022, according to his foundation’s tax filings.

Sign Up For Our Daily Newsletter

By clicking submit, you agree to our <a href="http://observermedia.com/terms">terms of service</a> and acknowledge we may use your information to send you emails, product samples, and promotions on this website and other properties. You can opt out anytime.

See all of our newsletters

With his newfound wealth, charities around the globe are eagerly awaiting to see where Huang will direct his giving. If past donations are any indication, the tech leader favors supporting higher education, diversity in A.I. and causes based in California, where Nvidia is headquartered. The majority of Huang’s charitable contributions, however, haven’t directly gone to nonprofits but donor-advised funds (DAFs)—a philanthropic savings account favored by the ultra-wealthy and occasionally criticized for their lack of transparency.

The Jen-Hsun & Lori Huang Foundation, a private family foundation using the Taiwan-born entrepreneur’s Chinese name and his wife’s name, was founded in 2007 with Huang acting as secretary and chief financial officer and his wife Lori serving as president. It gave a total of $66.3 million in 2022, according to the foundation’s most recently available tax records. While around $11 million was given that year to Huang’s alma maters of Stanford and Oregon State University, $55.3 million was earmarked for a fund at Schwab Charitable, a DAF sponsor associated with financial services company Charles Schwab. Of the nearly $150 million Huang’s foundation has dispersed in total since its establishment, around 83 percent has been funneled into DAFs.

What are donor-advised funds?

Unlike a traditional 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that's required to give away at least 5 percent of its assets every year, a DAF is not subject to this rule and its money can sit in funds for years. Used by billionaire philanthropists like Larry Page, Elon Musk and Sergey Brin, DAFs have come under controversy for their opacity as they aren't required to disclose account grants.

"DAFs enable donors to get maximum tax benefits for charitable giving—the type of benefits that are supposed to only be available for outright gifts to public charities, like food banks—without giving actual control to any charity," Ray Madoff, a law professor at Boston College, told Observer. "Instead the donor gets ongoing advisory privileges that allow the donor to decide when or whether to make a charitable distribution."

The majority of Huang's DAF donations have gone to a fund at Schwab Charitable called the Ge Force Fund, which takes its name from a GPU line from Nvidia but isn't related to the company's corporate philanthropy. In addition to $68 million given to Ge Force over the years and the $55.3 million given to a Schwab Charitable fund two years ago, Huang in 2007 gifted $277,000 to another DAF sponsor, the Silicon Valley Community Foundation, the largest foundation in the Bay Area.

Outside of his giving to DAFs, much of Huang's donations have been scattered across the tech industry and in California, where both Huang and his company are based. Local nonprofits like the Monterey Bay Aquarium, Law Foundation of Silicon Valley, Tides Center and B612 Foundation have all received donations in the five to six-figure range from the Jen-Hsun & Lori Huang Foundation. The philanthropists have additionally financially supported AI4ALL, an organization focused on increasing diversity and inclusion in A.I., and have given around $700,000 to aid the digital charity Mental Health Innovations in its mission to create mental health solutions with technology.

The majority of the Nvidia head's direct grants, however, have thus far been overwhelmingly geared towards higher education. In 2022, Huang and Lori donated $50 million to Oregon State University to help create a supercomputing institute on campus. The duo has additionally given $2 million to Oneida Baptist Institute, a Kentucky boarding school that Huang attended, and pledged $30 million to build an engineering center at Stanford University.

"All of us want to make a difference. We all want to have a life of purpose and make a difference in the world, with a better future for ourselves and the people we care about," Huang told Stanford's engineering school in 2010. "In my personal case, because I have greater resources than most, I can place more bets."

Where Does Nvidia CEO Jensen Huang Give Away His Billions?