Atheist Hedge Fund Manager In Boost To Catholic Schools

May 24 2007 | 12:41pm ET

Beset by financial difficulty, forced to close parishes and schools, the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of New York has found an unusual savior: a hedge fund pioneer who happens to be an atheist.

God moves in a mysterious way, indeed.

Robert Wilson, the billionaire retired hedge fund manager and major philanthropist, has pledged $22.5 million to help fund scholarships for inner-city students to attend Catholic schools. It is the largest gift ever received by the archdiocese, it said.

“Shunning religious organizations would be abhorrent,” the normally publicity-shy Wilson told Bloomberg News. “Keep in mind, I’m helping to pay tuition. The money isn’t going directly to the schools.”

A spokesman for Edward Cardinal Egan, the archbishop of New York, said that Egan never considered rejecting the gift because of Wilson’s atheism.

“It was a chance for a very modest amount of money to get kids out of a lousy school system and into a good school system,” Wilson explains. The program he’s supporting, the Cardinal’s Scholarship Program, is trying to raise $158 million to fund 11,700 scholarships. Applicants do not have to be Catholic in order to be considered.


In Depth

Q&A: Filippo Pignatti Morano On The Ultimate Alternative Investment...Classic Cars

Jan 29 2015 | 12:37pm ET

In 2011, Filippo Pignatti Morano launched a fund to invest in classic cars. FINalternatives...

Lifestyle

Looking For A Hedge Fund Manager? Try Davos

Jan 28 2015 | 8:48am ET

Davos, Switzerland seems to have become the hedge fund capital of the world—at...

Guest Contributor

Five Tips For Successfully Marketing Your Hedge Fund

Jan 30 2015 | 9:14am ET

When it comes to the hedge fund industry, the notion of “build it and it will...

 

Editor's Note