Huntsmans, other billionaires pledge to donate half their wealth

Utahns Jon Huntsman Sr. and wife Karen are among 40 wealthy families and individuals who have joined Microsoft Corp. co-founder Bill Gates and billionaire investor Warren Buffett in a pledge to give at least half their wealth to charity.

Six weeks after launching a campaign to get other billionaires to donate most of their fortunes, Buffett, the chairman and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway Inc., released the first list Wednesday of people who have signed what he and Gates call the "giving pledge."

Huntsman said he and Buffett have been friends for years.

"I told him, when he asked if I'd donate 50 percent of my assets to charity, that I was already doing that. I said, 'I'll be happy to sign the pledge, Warren, but I want you to do know I've already done that long before you called, and it has not only been 50 percent but 80 percent, and the other 20 percent will follow!"

Huntsman said that over his lifetime, he's given $1.2 billion to charitable organizations. "That represents today about 80 percent of our net worth," he said.

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