Philanthropist Joan Kroc Leaves NPR $200 Million Gift

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Joan B. Kroc

The late Joan B. Kroc. Twyla Cecil, courtesy Joan B. Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies hide caption

itoggle caption Twyla Cecil, courtesy Joan B. Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies

NPR will benefit from a bequest of more than $200 million from the estate of philanthropist Joan B. Kroc, NPR President Kevin Klose announced Thursday.

"Joan Kroc believed deeply in the power of public radio to serve the communities of America," Klose said. "She made this extraordinary gift from her steadfast conviction that NPR and our member stations provide a vital connection to millions of listeners."

Most of the money — described by NPR as "the largest monetary gift ever received by an American cultural institution" — will go toward the NPR Endowment Fund for Excellence, created in 1993 to provide support for NPR activities independent of other revenue sources.

The precise amount of the gift will depend on the final value of the Kroc estate. John A. Herrmann Jr., chairman of the NPR foundation, said the gift will increase the size of the endowment fund beyond $225 million.

Joan Kroc, widow of McDonald's Corp. founder Ray A. Kroc, died Oct. 12 of cancer. She was 75. In recent years she had made substantial gifts to organizations promoting world peace.

Member station KPBS in San Diego — near the Kroc family home in Rancho Santa Fe, Calif. — will receive a $5 million contribution from the Kroc estate.

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