Bernie Marcus

Bernie Marcus

BERNIE MARCUS Chairman, The Marcus Foundation Philanthropist and public servant of the highest caliber, Bernie Marcus made a wide and lasting impact in his community and beyond. In 1979, Mr. Marcus co-founded The Home Depot, Inc., the world's largest home improvement retailer, and was its first CEO. He was chairman until his retirement in 2002. He then redirected his entrepreneurial spirit toward a variety of charitable endeavors, channeling his generosity through The Marcus Foundation, which focuses on Jewish causes, children, medical research, free enterprise and the community. Among The Marcus Foundation’s key grants: --Grady Health System’s Marcus Stroke & Neuroscience Center and The Marcus Trauma Center --To improve emergency care to trauma and acute neurological injury victims throughout Georgia, it gifted The Piedmont Heart Institute received a grant to establish the nation’s first heart valve reference center at Piedmont Hospital --American Friends of Magen David Adom (AFMDA) received a gift to help Magen David Adom (MDA) build a critically needed new underground national blood center in Israel --The Shepherd Center’s Project Share ensures that members of the military and veterans get diagnosed and cared for without financial constraint --Thomas Jefferson University and Hospitals’ integrative health center that brings the best of all worlds – integrative, global and traditional health – to patients --The Israel Democracy Institute in Jerusalem is a non-partisan and non-political think tank that deals with the complex issues facing the Israeli democratic society --Both strong believers in contributing to the health of the world around them, Bernie and his wife Billi established The Marcus Institute, which provides programs for children with disorders of the brain and their families. Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta joined forces with The Institute to create the Marcus Autism Center, which offers expanded services for children with autism. Bernie also was the initial funder of Autism Speaks, an autism advocacy national organization. As a thank you to the associates, customers and shareholders of Atlanta and Georgia for the success of The Home Depot, where it is headquartered, Bernie created the Georgia Aquarium, the largest aquarium in the northern hemisphere. Bernie and Billi Marcus were among the first to sign The Giving Pledge, a commitment made by the world’s wealthiest individuals and families to commit more than half of their wealth to philanthropy or charitable causes either during their lifetime or in their will. Encouraged by his mother to “always give back,” Mr. Marcus’ contributions are always given with the expectation that they will make a significant difference.
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