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Amazon Billionaire’s ex-wife donates $10 million to Goodwill of Kentucky

Goodwill Industries of Kentucky Receives $10 Million Donation
Published: Dec. 16, 2020 at 4:04 PM CST
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LOUISVILLE, KY – Goodwill Industries of Kentucky recently received an unsolicited $10 million donation from writer and philanthropist MacKenzie Scott that will be used to support its mission to help people with significant life challenges improve their quality of life through employment.

The donation from Scott announced on Tuesday is part of the $4.1 billion that she has donated over the past four months to nearly 400 organizations helping fulfill basic needs for many Americans struggling in the pandemic.

The $10 million gift to Goodwill Industries of Kentucky is the largest single donation the nearly 100-year-old nonprofit organization has ever received.

“Goodwill is deeply touched by this incredibly kind gesture from MacKenzie Scott,” said Amy Luttrell, President and CEO of Goodwill Industries of Kentucky. “As you can imagine, our team is especially excited about the ability this gift gives us to serve even more Kentuckians in deep and meaningful ways.

Because the $10 million donation from Scott was not solicited, Goodwill officials have not yet determined specifically how to utilize the funds. However, the organization is broadly committed to using the entire gift to help Kentuckians experience the dignity and independence that comes from earning a paycheck and achieving self-sufficiency.

“We can say with confidence that this donation will ultimately be used to support the priorities in our existing strategic plan, which are to help people gain stability in their lives and build skills that prepare them for a career,” said Luttrell. “Thankfully, our overhead costs are already covered, so this gift will allow us to significantly add to the services we already provide to Kentuckians.”

“We were not even aware that we were on a list of nonprofits that Mackenzie Scott was considering making donations to. And so when we got the email, it seems so suspicious. Like it was a scam, that we actually ignored the first one. And eventually, as the conversations continued, we realized that Christmas was going to come early for Goodwill Industries of Kentucky,” Vice President of External Affairs, DeVone Holt. “So the gift itself came to Goodwill Industries of Kentucky, but the way we see this really is an investment in the state of Kentucky. That’s because we have a statewide footprint, and are committed to using these resources specifically for programs and services that helped the men and women around the state find pathways to success.”

In the last six years, Goodwill Industries of Kentucky has aggressively expanded its service offerings to Kentucky’s hardest-to-serve job seekers by including reentry services for citizens returning from incarceration, expungement clinics and youth programs to its other well-established list of services, which are all designed to help remove barriers to employment.

In 2021, the statewide nonprofit organization plans to launch a new career services model that provides jobseekers a robust offering of supports from Goodwill and many of its resource partners.

Goodwill also recently announced plans to establish a comprehensive “Opportunity Campus” on 20 acres in West Louisville that will serve as a resource center for people pursuing pathways to success.

“This $10 million gift is more than an unexpected financial contribution,” said Charlie Kane, chair of Goodwill’s board of directors. “It’s a welcomed endorsement of the bold steps Goodwill has taken to serve the state of Kentucky and an opportunity for us to be even more ambitious in helping people transform their lives.”

So far in 2020, Goodwill Industries of Kentucky has assisted nearly 2,000 jobseekers in obtaining full-time employment with hundreds of employers throughout the state. The organization is helping thousands of other jobseekers prepare themselves for full-time employment with its career development programs and services that include virtual job fairs, workshops, professional coaching and soft-skills clinics designed to prepare people for jobs and careers.

“Because of our presence in 103 of Kentucky’s counties, we view this donation as an investment in the entire state. It will have a positive impact on the lives of people throughout Kentucky,” said Luttrel

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