Melinda Gates Pledges $1 Billion for Gender Equality

On Wednesday morning, the co-chair of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation announced that she is pledging $1 billion to promote gender equality in the U.S. over the next 10 years.

The $1 billion pledge will be used to fund and grow female-focused programs through investment and incubation firm Pivotal Ventures, Gates wrote in Time. The specific initiatives to be funded by the pledge will be announced at a later date, a representative for Pivotal Ventures told Business Insider. Gates founded Pivotal Ventures in 2015.

Gates and her team at Pivotal Ventures identified three changes that she thinks will make a measurable impact by 2030: dispelling the barriers women face at work, creating opportunities for women to scale to leadership positions and making sure businesses are held accountable for fostering gender equality. 

Equality can’t wait, and no one in a position to act should either,” Gates says. “We are right to be outraged. But we’re also right to be optimistic. Americans are no longer willing to accept the glacial pace of change — and I feel lucky to be alive at a time when we no longer have to.”

“I want to see more women in the position to make decisions, control resources, and shape policies and perspectives,” Gates writes. “I believe that women’s potential is worth investing in—and the people and organizations working to improve women’s lives are, too.”

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, run by Melinda Gates and her husband Bill Gates, co-founder of Microsoft, focuses on world health, infectious diseases, child mortality, sustainable growth and other global philanthropic issues.

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