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Robert F. Smith
Entrepreneur and philanthropist Robert F. Smith has long supported educational opportunities for students, as he’s been aware since his childhood in Denver, CO, of the value of a quality education. He’s also been a vocal advocate for limiting the impact of crushing student loan debt on college graduates.
In 2019, he announced he would pay off all of the student loans of the entire graduating class of Morehouse College — a gift of over $34 million. That act inspired a plan for even greater impact to create generational change for college students, who can overcome huge obstacles to advance their own education and careers. His $50 million donation, which matched that of the nonprofit Fund II Foundation (of which Smith is the founding director and President), provided the initial endowment for Student Freedom Initiative.