Morehouse Gets $40M Donation From Netflix CEO And Wife, Part Of $120M Going To 3 HBCUs

Isheka N. Harrison
Written by Isheka N. Harrison
Netflix CEO
Netflix CEO Reed Hastings and his wife, philanthropist Patty Quillin, just made the largest individual donation in HBCU history. Images: Flickr/MMG

Netflix CEO Reed Hastings and his wife, philanthropist Patty Quillin aren’t just saying “Black Lives Matter,” they’re investing in them. The couple just made the largest individual donation in HBCU history.

The couple donated $120 million to the United Negro College Fund (UNCF), Morehouse College and Spelman College. Each institution will receive $40 million, according to a press release.

“We’ve supported these three extraordinary institutions for the last few years because we believe that investing in the education of Black youth is one of the best ways to invest in America’s future,” Hastings And Quillin said. “Both of us had the privilege of a great education and we want to help more students – in particular students of color – get the same start in life. HBCUs have a tremendous record, yet are disadvantaged when it comes to giving. Generally, White capital flows to predominantly White institutions, perpetuating capital isolation. We hope this additional $120 million donation will help more Black students follow their dreams and also encourage more people to support these institutions – helping to reverse generations of inequity in our country.”

Known for their investment in higher education, the couple has been giving to colleges since 1997. They hope their example will lead other white donors to invest in educating Black youth.

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The leaders of all three institutions expressed their immense gratitude to the couple.

This gift speaks volumes about the value that must be placed on what institutions such as ours do for the nation and the world,” said Morehouse College President Dr. David A. Thomas.

“This gift from Patty and Reed comes from two people who care deeply about education, equity and the future of our country. We are enormously grateful for their affirmation of the work of Spelman College,” said Spelman President Dr. Mary Schmidt Campbell.

“I am uplifted by the incredible support of Patty and Reed whose commitment has reaffirmed that we can overcome these challenges together,” said UNCF CEO Dr. Michael Lomax. Dr. King famously reminded us that ‘the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.’ I believe the arc does not bend toward justice on its own. We must bend it with all the strength and power we have. Patty and Reed are helping bend the arc toward justice. I am buoyed and uplifted by their commitment and generosity. I feel a profound sense of responsibility to steward their incredible gift to maximum impact and ensure that it advances their belief in and commitment to the principle that ‘Black lives matter.’”