Spanx founder Sara Blakely has pledged to give away half her $1 billion fortune to philanthropic causes.
Blakely is the latest philanthropist to sign the The Giving Pledge, a place where the wealthiest individuals in the world gather to announce huge donations to charity.
Blakely, at 42 America’s youngest self-made female billionaire, is the 114th name on the list, which also includes Bill and Melinda Gates, Michael Bloomberg, Warren Buffett, Richard Branson, and Mark Zuckerberg.
Fittingly, Blakely’s significant wedge will be handed over to womens’ charities. In a letter on the site, she writes:
“Since I was a little girl I have always known I would help women. In my wildest dreams I never thought I would have started with their butts. As it turns out, that was a great place to start!
“I have so much gratitude for being a woman in America. I never lose sight that I was born in the right country, at the right time. And, I never lose sight of the fact that there are millions of women around the world who are not dealt the same deck of cards upon their birth. Simply because of their gender, they are not given the same chance I had to create my own success and follow their dreams. It is for those women that I make this pledge.”
Blakely has form in philanthropy: In 2006, she launched the Sara Blakely Foundation to help women through education and entrepreneurial training, and also gave $1 million to Oprah Winfrey’s Leadership Academy.