Netflix CEO announces biggest individual contribution to historically black colleges ever

Reed Hastings
(Image credit: Ernesto S. Ruscio/Getty Images for Netflix)

The CEO of Netflix has just announced a huge donation to historically black colleges.

Netflix CEO Reed Hastings and his wife, Patty Quillin, on Wednesday said they're donating $120 million to Spelman College, Morehouse College, and the United Negro College Fund, The Wall Street Journal reports. That's the "largest ever contribution by an individual in support of scholarships at historically black colleges and universities," an announcement said.

This donation is the latest to be announced amid nationwide protests over the police killing of George Floyd, and Hastings earlier this week said Netflix would commit $5 million to "nonprofits dedicated to creating direct opportunities for black creators, black youth and black-owned businesses."

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Hastings and Quillin encouraged others to support historically black colleges and universities, which "are disadvantaged when it comes to giving" since "generally, white capital flows to predominantly white institutions, perpetuating capital isolation." Hastings also told The New York Times that Floyd's killing was "the straw that broke the camel's back, I think, for the size of the donation," and he told the Journal that he and Quillin realized "that our part of this, to have America be the country we all want it to be, was to focus on education."

Morehouse President David A. Thomas told the Journal "this is a watershed moment," which will "send a signal that historically black colleges should be valued in the same way that we value our most successful undergraduate colleges in this country."

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Brendan Morrow

Brendan is a staff writer at The Week. A graduate of Hofstra University with a degree in journalism, he also writes about horror films for Bloody Disgusting and has previously contributed to The Cheat Sheet, Heavy, WhatCulture, and more. He lives in New York City surrounded by Star Wars posters.