Billionaire Warren Buffett has raised more than $20 million for a San Francisco homeless charity since 2000, and he’s just added to that total by auctioning off a private lunch.
“I am proud to be part of something that has directly benefited so many people in need,” Buffett said ahead of the auction. “Glide is a bridge for thousands of people on the brink of despair, helping them achieve dignity and opportunity by providing them with basic services.”Rev. Cecil Williams, one of Glide’s co-founders, said the cumulative effect of the donations has been “astonishing.”
Buffett has said he gets a wide range of questions at the lunches that usually run for several hours. The only limit on lunch conversation is what Buffett might invest in next, but any other topic is open.The winners of the lunch auction typically dine with Buffett at Smith and Wollensky steakhouse in New York City, which donates at least $10,000 to Glide each year to host the lunch. But when the winner wants to remain anonymous, the lunch happens elsewhere.
Buffett’s company owns more than 90 subsidiaries including insurance, furniture, railroad, jewelry and candy companies, restaurants and natural gas and corporate jet firms, and has major investments in such companies as Coca-Cola, IBM and Wells Fargo & Co