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Town Hall Seattle and Community Alliance for Global Justice present

Tim Schwab with Ashley Fent

The Problem with Philanthropy

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Wed Dec 6, 2023
7:30 pm PST


The Wyncote NW Forum
1119 8th Ave (Entrance off Seneca St.)
Seattle, 98101 United States
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The Bill Gates Problem: Reckoning with the Myth of the Good Billionaire

The Elliott Bay Book Company

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Journalist Tim Schwab is no stranger to investigative journalism that scrutinizes power structures and questions how private interests intersect with public policy. 

With funding from a 2019 Alicia Patterson Fellowship, Schwab pursued an investigative series specific to Bill Gates and the Gates Foundation, and his work was published by The Nation in 2020 and 2021.

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Now Schwab expands on his reporting in a new book, The Bill Gates Problem. Schwab provides an in-depth analysis of Bill Gates’ philanthropic trajectory, tracing his evolution from a prominent figure in the tech industry to a globally admired individual. Drawing from years of investigation, Schwab highlights concerns related to undue influence on public policy, private markets, scientific research, and media narratives.

Are such philanthropic endeavors truly democratic? Or even effective? By facilitating an open dialogue, Schwab seeks to empower participants to critically evaluate the role of philanthropy in society, encouraging constructive discussions about its impact and implications.

Tim Schwab is an investigative journalist based in Washington, D.C. His groundbreaking reporting on the Gates Foundation for The Nation, Columbia Journalism Review, and The British Medical Journal has been honored with an Izzy Award and a Deadline Club Award. The Bill Gates Problem is his first book.

Ashley Fent is a former research director of AGRA Watch, a campaign of Community Alliance for Global Justice. She co-founded CAGJ’s AGRA Watch campaign while still an undergraduate at University of Washington. She has ten plus years’ experience as a social-environmental researcher, writer, and multimedia content producer. She holds a Ph.D. in Geography from UCLA and a M.A. in Anthropology and African Studies from Columbia University.  

Daniel Maingi is a science and development practitioner in Kenya with a 15-year career helping to bring learning on appropriate and sustainable technologies to Civil Society Organizations in Eastern Africa. Daniel is a policy campaigner for CSOs at the Inter-Sectoral Forum on Agrobiodiversity and Agroecology. He is currently researching the digitalization of agriculture in Kenya as a Stanford University Fellow (2023-24) with the Digital Civil Society Lab & The Stanford Center on Philanthropy and Civil Society (PACS).

Stephen Gloyd, MD, MPH, is a family practice physician who has been a University of Washington faculty member since 1986. Dr. Gloyd is Director of the Global Health MPH Program in the UW’s Department of Global Health where he directs efforts to expand curricular options to address global workforce needs. His work with Health Alliance International is designed to improve approaches to global health assistance and to strengthen primary health care with the Ministries of Health of Mozambique, Côte d’Ivoire, Sudan, and Timor-Leste.

Jesse Hagopian has been an educator for over twenty years and taught for over a decade Seattle’s Garfield High School–the site of the historic boycott of the MAP test. Jesse is an editor for the social justice periodical Rethinking Schools, is the co-editor of the books, Black Lives Matter at SchoolTeaching for Black LivesTeacher Unions and Social Justice, and is the editor of the book, More Than a Score.

Presented by Town Hall Seattle and Community Alliance for Global Justice.

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