Non-profit

Gordon E. and Betty I. Moore Foundation

Location:

PALO ALTO, CA

Tax ID:

94-3397785

Tax-Exempt Status:

501(c)(3)-PF

Budget (2015):

Revenue: $284,453,223
Expenses: $331,006,301
Assets: $6,388,223,432

Formation:

2001

Board Chair:

Gordon E. Moore

President:

Harvey V. Fineberg

Chief Investment Officer:

Denise Strack

Intel founder Gordon Moore and his wife Betty established the Gordon E. and Betty I. Moore Foundation (also known as the Moore Foundation) in 2000, and Gordon funded the foundation’s endowment with 175 million shares of Intel stock in 2001.[1]  Since its launch, the foundation has devoted 46.2% of its grants to environmental conservation, 33.1% to science, 10.1% to patient care, and 8.8% to projects in the San Francisco Bay area. [2]

With its generous support of left-of-center environmentalist organizations hostile to energy production, logging, and mining, the Moore Foundation’s Environmental Conservation program is the foundation’s most political and controversial. The program’s philosophy is summed up in the founders’ intent: “During our lifetimes we have observed the transformation of much of what was natural wilderness to highly-developed property… Huge areas of the planet are in danger of having their basic structure altered as a consequence of development and exploitation of resources.”[3] To counter this development, Moore has granted hundreds of millions of dollars to far-left organizations like the David Suzuki Foundation, the Renewable Resources Coalition, and the Alaska Conservation Foundation.[4]

The Moore Foundation’s most controversial effort was its 2011 role in funding and coordinating a coalition of foundations, Native American tribes, and activists, which worked closely with the Obama Administration’s Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to halt the proposed Pebble Mine on land in Alaska containing one of the world’s largest deposits of gold, silver, copper, and molybdenum. The EPA employed a seldom-used “veto authority” under the Clean Water Act to halt the project before the mining partnership had even submitted a mine design and plan, though it was later overturned by Trump Administration’s EPA.[5][6]

History

Intel founder Gordon Moore and his wife Betty established the Gordon E. and Betty I. Moore Foundation (also known as the Moore Foundation), in 2000, and Gordon funded the foundation’s endowment with 175 million shares of Intel stock in 2001.[7]

The Moores claim to evaluate each funding opportunity for its potential for large and enduring impact, and its measurability. Since its launch, the foundation has devoted 46.2% of its grants to environmental conservation, 33.1% to science, 10.1% to patient care, and 8.8% to projects in the San Francisco Bay area. [8]

Funding Activities

Environmental Conservation

With its generous support of left-of-center environmental organizations hostile to energy, logging, and mining companies, the Environmental Conservation program is the foundation’s most controversial.

The Moore Foundation launched its environmental program in 2001, with a series of grants totaling $261 million for a 10-year period to Conservation International (CI) to create a Global Conservation Fund (GCF) “to stop species extinctions in biodiversity hotspots and to protect large areas of major tropical wilderness areas.”[9] These grants, which eventually grew to $395 million, comprise the largest gift ever to a private conservation organization.[10] While the GSF “empowered” local communities, NGOs, and governments to protect their natural resources, and funded debt-for-nature swaps, carbon credits, and other standard environmental schemes,[11] CI nonetheless was accused by the far left of “greenwashing” companies like BP, Cargill, Chevron, Monsanto and Shell by giving them environmentalist cover while those companies continued allegedly environmentally unfriendly operations.[12][13]

Many of the Moore Foundation’s other grantees, however, boast fully leftist bona fides. Since 2003, for instance, Moore has awarded over $3 million to the David Suzuki Foundation,[14] a radical environmental organization whose founder and namesake has called for criminalizing opposition to the environmentalist agenda.[15]

In 2005, the Moore Foundation made a $600,000 grant to the Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership (TRCP), for the stated purpose of, according to tax records, “to change the current course of energy development on public lands.” [16]. Interestingly, the foundation’s website now claims the grant was for a less-controversial purpose: “To apply the influence of key hunting and fishing conservation organizations to improve the protection of fish and wildlife and their habitats.”[17] The TRCP has long marketed itself as a sportsmen’s conservation organization, but its activities suggest that its focus is on advocating for continually increasing government regulation through agencies like the EPA and legislation like the Clean Water Act.[18]

The Moore Foundation’s most controversial effort was its role in convincing the Obama Administration’s Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to temporarily stop a proposed mine on state land in southwestern Alaska containing one of the world’s largest deposits of gold, silver, copper, and molybdenum ever discovered.[19][20]

Canadian mining company Northern Dynasty acquired the Pebble deposit in 2001, and established the Pebble Partnership in 2007, “to design, permit, construct, and operate a modern, long-life mine” located about 200 miles southwest of Anchorage in the Bristol Bay region of Alaska.[21][22]

Meanwhile, the Moore Foundation was busy funding and facilitating opposition to the Pebble Project. As early as 2006, Moore provided the environmentalist group Trout Unlimited $925,625 for “a media campaign to build support for the permanent protection of the region’s valuable salmon resources.”[23] In 2008, Moore gave $1,032,800 to the Renewable Resources Coalition for “Pebble Mine Education and Outreach,”[24] $1.1 million to the Alaska Conservation Foundation for “Pebble mine campaign coordination,” and $624,000 to the Nature Conservancy for “Pebble mine science and risk assessment.” In 2009, the foundation gave another $1,029,542 to Trout Unlimited, this time “to develop and execute a paid media campaign that will educate residents of Alaska about the benefits of protecting renewable resources in Bristol Bay, and the risks associated with large-scale mining.”[25] In 2010, Moore gave $567,246 to Earthworks “to engage with the private sector around the proposed development of Pebble Mine in Bristol Bay.” That same year, Moore was joined by fellow “big green” funders the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation and The New York Community Trust, who collectively gave $600,000 to Trout Unlimited and the even more radical Natural Resources Defense Council for “prevention of development” of the Pebble Mine. [26]

Then, in February 2011, upon completion of a “multi-year watershed assessment in Bristol Bay,” the EPA employed a seldom-used “veto authority” under the Clean Water Act to halt the Pebble project before the mining partnership had even submitted a mine design, plan, and permit application.[27] Moore Foundation president Steve McCormick stated in a 2013 Huffington Post interview that a good example of the foundation’s pursuit of “collective impact” was “the mobilization of key stakeholders in stopping the Pebble Mine at Bristol Bay.”[28]

Scientific Research

The Moore Foundation kicked off its science program in 2001 with a grant of $300 million over 10 years and a personal donation from the Moores themselves of $300 million over five years to the California Institute of Technology, Gordon’s alma mater. Collectively, the two contributions comprise the largest donation ever to an institution of higher learning. The grants fund projects in cosmology, physical sciences, chemistry, earth and planetary sciences, structural biology, and neuroscience.[29][30]

Since 2001, the foundation has donated hundreds of millions of dollars to substantial and collaborative projects. Among them are efforts to design, create, and improve upon the most advanced telescopes in the world, including the Thirty Meter Telescope,[31] which will one day enable astronomers to study objects “at the very edge of the observable Universe”;[32] the Event Horizon Telescope, which will have “the greatest resolving power of any astronomical instrument ever assembled, and allow imaging of… a supermassive black hole”;[33] and today’s “most scientifically productive optical and infrared telescope” at the Keck Observatory.[34][35]

Other notable scientific projects are the foundation’s support of Princeton University in facilitating the growth of quantum computing by using less expensive silicon-based materials,[36] the global Marine Microbiology Initiative backing scientists’ efforts to develop an experimental model systems in marine microbial ecology, which will enable researchers “to ask scientific questions in ways not currently possible,”[37] and multiple projects focusing on advanced particle accelerators, the Earthquake Early Warning system, imaging, and plant science.[38]

To help facilitate collaboration beyond its own projects, the Moore Foundation has also funded open source efforts including an open-source computing language called Julia, and the publication of two online scientific journals providing open and free access to scientific research at the Public Library of Science (PLoS).[39]

In 2016, the foundation launched the Moore Inventor Fellows providing early-career scientist-inventors $825,000 over three years to work on “unique and groundbreaking projects.” The foundation plans to allocate nearly $34 million through 2026 to support 50 Moore Inventor Fellows.[40]

Patient Care

The Moore Foundation has spent $421 million on its efforts to improve patient care in the U.S. This includes a 2007 $100 million grant to launch the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing at the University of California, Davis, the largest grant ever for nursing education in the U.S.[41] Partnering with Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Johns Hopkins Medical Center, and University of California San Francisco Medical Center, the foundation funded projects from 2012 to 2016 that sought to eliminate common and preventable medical harms in intensive care units.[42]

More recently, the foundation has shifted its focus to community-based care in outpatient clinics, rehabilitation centers, and in the homes of patients. “As the next wave of patient safety efforts move in this direction,” states the foundation, “we will explore how our resources can best be applied to improve the safety of the care people receive.” In particular, the foundation will explore diagnostic and medication errors, and opportunities to provide “high-quality, community-based care” for an aging high-need population.[43] [44]

San Francisco Bay

The Moore Foundation has donated more than $284 million to conservation projects and museums in the San Francisco Bay area. Roughly $172 million has been devoted to conservation. Funding has supported local trusts in more than 80 acquisitions, easements, and “other conservation-related projects” in order to prevent development and “sustain the biodiversity” in the region. Grants have also been awarded to local conservation initiatives, including Audubon California’s effort to protect the habitat of the Pacific herring, Sempervirens Fund’s proposal for a “carbon bank” for owners of redwood forest land in the Santa Cruz Mountain area, and a study by the San Francisco Estuary Institute and the 5 Gyres Institute of microplastic pollution in San Francisco Bay. The remainder of the Bay budget is devoted to museums including the Exploratorium, Berkeley Lawrence Hall of Science, Tech Museum of Innovation, and Chabot Space & Science Center.[45][46][47][48]

Leadership

Gordon E. Moore, Chairman of the Board

Gordon Moore is co-founder of Intel Corporation and Chairman Emeritus of the Intel Board of Directors. Moore was chief executive officer at Intel from 1975 to 1987, and was chairman until 1997 when he became chairman emeritus. He is the namesake of “Moore’s Law,” his 1965 contention that the number of transistors the industry would be able to place on a chip would double every year, which has become a slang term for the rapid pace of technological advancement.[49]

Moore received the Presidential Medal of Freedom from President George W. Bush in 2002[50] and the National Medal of Technology in 1990.[51]

Harvey V. Fineberg, President

Harvey V. Fineberg is a physician and president of the Moore Foundation. Prior to the Moore Foundation, Dr. Fineberg held the Presidential Chair as visiting professor at the University of California, San Francisco, served as president of the Institute of Medicine and as provost of Harvard University, and served as dean of the Harvard School of Public Health. He also helped found and served as president of the Society for Medical Decision Making, and co-authored the books Clinical Decision Analysis, Innovators in Physician Education, and The Epidemic that Never Was.[52] “People Detail: Harvey V. Fineberg, M.D., Ph.D.” Moore Foundation. Accessed December 19, 2017. https://www.moore.org/people-detail?personUrl=harveyf [53]

References

  1. “Timeline.” Moore Foundation 2015 Annual Report. Accessed December 19, 2017. https://www.moore.org/AnnualReport2015/Index.html
  2. “Grants Paid by Program.” Moore Foundation 2015 Annual Report. Accessed December 19, 2017. https://www.moore.org/AnnualReport2015/Index.html
  3. “Statement of Founders’ Intent.” Moore Foundation. Accessed December 19, 2017. https://www.moore.org/about/founders-intent
  4. “Grants.” Moore Foundation. ACCESSED DECEMBER 19, 2017. https://www.moore.org/grants?filterProgram=f0dcf360-a10f-68a5-8452-ff00002785c8
  5. “Pebble Mine debate in Alaska: EPA becomes target by planning for rare ‘veto.’” The Washington Post. Published February 15, 2015. Accessed December 19, 2017. https://www.washingtonpost.com/national/health-science/internal-memos-spur-accusations-of-bias-as-epa-moves-to-block-gold-mine/2015/02/15/3ff101c0-b2ba-11e4-854b-a38d13486ba1_story.html?utm_term=.c05cb38f3bf6
  6. “Vitter and Wicker Ask EPA to Stop Undermining Pebble Mine.” U.S. Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works. December 19, 2017. https://www.epw.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/press-releases-republican?ID=FD734426-F8C1-AA76-045C-D6F22F21117E
  7. “Timeline.” Moore Foundation 2015 Annual Report. Accessed December 19, 2017. https://www.moore.org/AnnualReport2015/Index.html
  8. “Grants Paid by Program.” Moore Foundation 2015 Annual Report. Accessed December 19, 2017. https://www.moore.org/AnnualReport2015/Index.html
  9. “Conservation International unveils solution to prevent global species extinctions.” Moore Foundation. Accessed December 19, 2017. https://www.moore.org/article-detail?newsUrlName=conservation-international-unveils-solution-to-prevent-global-species-extinctions
  10. “Lessons from the Moore Foundation’s Largest and Longest Grants (SSIR).” Stanford Social Innovation Review. Accessed December 19, 2017. https://ssir.org/articles/entry/lessons_from_the_moore_foundations_largest_and_longest_grants
  11. “Conservation International unveils solution to prevent global species extinctions.” Moore Foundation. Accessed December 19, 2017. https://www.moore.org/article-detail?newsUrlName=conservation-international-unveils-solution-to-prevent-global-species-extinctions
  12. “When Green Becomes Inc.” The New York Times. Published October 8, 2008. Accessed December 19, 2017. https://green.blogs.nytimes.com/2008/10/08/when-green-becomes-inc/
  13. “The Wrong Kind of Green.” The Nation Published June 29, 2015. Accessed December 19, 2017. https://www.thenation.com/article/wrong-kind-green-2/
  14. “Grantee Detail: David Suzuki Foundation.” Moore Foundation. Accessed December 19, 2017. https://www.moore.org/grantee-detail?granteeId=279
  15. “Jail politicians who ignore climate science: Suzuki.” National Post. Accessed December 19, 2017.http://www.nationalpost.com/news/story.html?id=290513
  16. Gordon E. and Betty I. Moore Foundation, Return of a Private Foundation (Form 990-PF), 2005, Schedule of Appropriations and Future Payments
  17. “Grant Detail.” Moore Foundation. Accessed December 19, 2017. https://www.moore.org/grant-detail?grantId=GBMF988
  18. “Clean Water Rule.” Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership. Accessed December 19, 2017. http://www.trcp.org/clean-water-rule/
  19. “EPA allows mine company to pursue permits near Alaska bay.” chicagotribune.com. Published May 12, 2017. Accessed December 19, 2017. http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/nationworld/ct-epa-alaska-pebble-mine-permits-20170512-story.html
  20. “Pebble Mine debate in Alaska: EPA becomes target by planning for rare ‘veto.’” The Washington Post. Published February 15, 2015. Accessed December 19, 2017. https://www.washingtonpost.com/national/health-science/internal-memos-spur-accusations-of-bias-as-epa-moves-to-block-gold-mine/2015/02/15/3ff101c0-b2ba-11e4-854b-a38d13486ba1_story.html?utm_term=.c05cb38f3bf6
  21. “About Us.” Northern Dynasty Minerals. Accessed December 19, 2017. https://www.northerndynastyminerals.com/about-us/pebble-partnership/
  22. “History.” Northern Dynasty Minerals. Accessed December 19, 2017. https://www.northerndynastyminerals.com/pebble-project/history-and-location/
  23. “Grant Detail.” Moore Foundation. Accessed December 19, 2017. https://www.moore.org/grant-detail?grantId=GBMF1307
  24. “Grant Detail.” Moore Foundation. Accessed December 19, 2017. https://www.moore.org/grant-detail?grantId=GBMF1456
  25. “Grant Detail.” Moore Foundation. Accessed December 19, 2017. https://www.moore.org/grant-detail?grantId=GBMF1196
  26. Data compiled by FoundationSearch.com subscription service, a project of Metasoft Systems, Inc., from forms filed with the Internal Revenue Service. Queries conducted December 19, 2017.
  27. “Proposed Determination of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Region 10 Pursuant to Section 404(c) of the Clean Water Act Pebble Deposit Area, Southwest Alaska.” United States. Environmental Protection Agency. July 2014. Accessed December 19, 2017.https://www.epa.gov/sites/production/files/2014-07/documents/pebble_es_pd_071714_final.pdf
  28. “Q&A With Steve McCormick: Dialogues on the Environment.” The Huffington Post. Published October 2, 2013. Accessed December 19, 2017. https://www.huffingtonpost.com/mark-tercek/qa-with-steve-mccormick-d_b_4031374.html
  29. “Caltech Receives $600 Million in Two Gifts; Largest Academic Donation in History.” The California Institute of Technology. Accessed December 19, 2017. http://www.caltech.edu/content/caltech-receives-600-million-two-giftslargest-academic-donation-history
  30. “Initiative Strategy Detail: California Institute of Technology.” Moore Foundation. Accessed December 19, 2017. https://www.moore.org/initiative-strategy-detail?initiativeId=california-institute-of-technology
  31. “Initiative Strategy Detail: Thirty Meter Telescope.” Moore Foundation. Accessed December 19, 2017. https://www.moore.org/initiative-strategy-detail?initiativeId=thirty-meter-telescope
  32. “About Thirty Meter Telescope.” Thirty Meter Telescope. Accessed December 19, 2017.http://www.tmt.org/about-tmt
  33. “Grant Detail.” Moore Foundation. Accessed December 19, 2017. https://www.moore.org/grant-detail?grantId=GBMF3561
  34. “About.” Keck Observatory. Accessed December 19, 2017. http://www.keckobservatory.org/about
  35. “Grant Detail.” Moore Foundation. Accessed December 19, 2017. https://www.moore.org/grant-detail?grantId=GBMF181
  36. “New silicon structure opens the gate to quantum computers.” Princeton University. Accessed December 19, 2017. https://www.princeton.edu/news/2017/12/11/new-silicon-structure-opens-gate-quantum-computers
  37. “$8M awarded to scientists from the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation to develop model systems in marine microbial ecology.” Moore Foundation. Accessed December 19, 2017. https://www.moore.org/article-detail?newsUrlName=$8m-awarded-to-scientists-from-the-gordon-and-betty-moore-foundation-to-accelerate-development-of-experimental-model-systems-in-marine-microbial-ecology
  38. “Science.” Moore Foundation. Accessed December 19, 2017. https://www.moore.org/programs/science
  39. “Moore Foundation Awards $9 Million for New Open-Access Scientific Journals.” Philanthropy News Digest (PND). Published December 18, 2002. Accessed December 19, 2017. http://philanthropynewsdigest.org/news/moore-foundation-awards-9-million-for-new-open-access-scientific-journals
  40. “Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation announces 2017 Moore Inventor Fellows.” Moore Foundation. Accessed December 19, 2017. https://www.moore.org/article-detail?newsUrlName=gordon-and-betty-moore-foundation-announces-2017-moore-inventor-fellows
  41. “Initiative Strategy Detail: Betty Moore School of Nursing.” Moore Foundation. Accessed December 19, 2017. https://www.moore.org/initiative-strategy-detail?initiativeId=betty-irene-moore-school-of-nursing
  42. “Initiative Strategy Detail: Patient Safety.” Moore Foundation. Accessed December 19, 2017. https://www.moore.org/initiative-strategy-detail?initiativeId=patient-safety
  43. “Initiative Strategy Detail: Patient Safety.” Moore Foundation. Accessed December 19, 2017. https://www.moore.org/initiative-strategy-detail?initiativeId=patient-safety
  44. “Initiative Strategy Detail: Serious Illness Care.” Moore Foundation. Accessed December 19, 2017. https://www.moore.org/initiative-strategy-detail?initiativeId=serious-illness-care
  45. “Initiative Strategy Detail: Conservation.” Moore Foundation. Accessed December 19, 2017. https://www.moore.org/initiative-additional-info?initiativeId=conservation
  46. “Santa Cruz Mountains carbon bank would pay land owners to conserve.” Moore Foundation. Accessed December 19, 2017. https://www.moore.org/article-detail?newsUrlName=santa-cruz-mountains-carbon-bank-would-pay-land-owners-to-conserve
  47. “New study will examine microplastic pollution in San Francisco Bay.” Moore Foundation. Accessed December 19, 2017. https://www.moore.org/article-detail?newsUrlName=new-study-will-examine-microplastic-pollution-in-san-francisco-bay
  48. “Initiative Strategy Detail: Science Technology Museums.” Moore Foundation. Accessed December 19, 2017. https://www.moore.org/initiative-strategy-detail?initiativeId=science-technology-museums
  49. “Caltech Receives $600 Million in Two Gifts; Largest Academic Donation in History.” The California Institute of Technology. Accessed December 19, 2017. https://www.moore.org/article-detail?newsUrlName=caltech-receives-$600-million-in-two-gifts-largest-academic-donation-in-history
  50. “Bush Honors 12 With Presidential Medal of Freedom.” The New York Times. Published July 9, 2002. Accessed December 19, 2017. http://www.nytimes.com/2002/07/09/politics/bush-honors-12-with-presidential-medal-of-freedom.html
  51. “1990 Laureates- National Medal of Technology and Innovation.” United States Patent and Trademark Office – An Agency of the Department of Commerce. Accessed December 19, 2017. https://www.uspto.gov/learning-and-resources/ip-programs-and-awards/national-medal-technology-and-innovation/recipients/1990
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Nonprofit Information

  • Accounting Period: December - November
  • Tax Exemption Received: September 1, 2001

  • Available Filings

    Period Form Type Total revenue Total functional expenses Total assets (EOY) Total liabilities (EOY) Unrelated business income? Total contributions Program service revenue Investment income Comp. of current officers, directors, etc. Form 990
    2015 Dec Form PF $284,453,223 $331,006,301 $6,388,223,432 $47,842,572 $0 $0 $0 $0 PDF
    2014 Dec Form PF $423,750,268 $269,694,185 $6,559,384,939 $58,810,473 $0 $0 $0 $0 PDF
    2013 Dec Form PF $430,418,414 $330,074,433 $6,417,833,620 $60,190,811 $0 $0 $0 $0 PDF
    2012 Dec Form PF $345,294,522 $275,896,936 $5,697,258,026 $52,237,468 $0 $0 $0 $0 PDF
    2011 Dec Form PF $228,630,465 $261,105,606 $5,366,672,508 $61,592,088 $0 $0 $0 $0 PDF

    Additional Filings (PDFs)

    Gordon E. and Betty I. Moore Foundation

    1661 PAGE MILL RD
    PALO ALTO, CA 94304-1209