|Intro||American novelist, philanthropist|
|A.K.A.||MacKenzi S. Tuttle, MacKenzi S. Bezos|
|Is||Writer Novelist Businessperson Philanthropist|
|From||United States of America|
|Birth||7 April 1970, San Francisco, San Francisco County, California, USA|
MacKenzie Scott (née Tuttle, formerly Bezos; April 7, 1970) is an American novelist and philanthropist. As of January 31, 2021, she has a net worth of US$57.5 billion, making her the third-wealthiest woman in the world, and the 20th-wealthiest individual overall. She is known for her marriage and high-profile divorce from Amazon and Blue Origin founder Jeff Bezos, and for her involvement in the founding of Amazon. She is a signatory to the Giving Pledge, a commitment to give at least half of her wealth to charity. In 2020, she made US$5.8 billion in charitable gifts, one of the largest annual distributions by a private individual to working charities.
In 2006, Scott won the American Book Award for her 2005 debut novel, The Testing of Luther Albright. Her second novel, Traps, was published in 2013. Scott has been executive director of Bystander Revolution since she founded it in 2014, and was named one of TIME Magazine's 100 Most Influential People of 2020.
Early life and education
MacKenzie Scott Tuttle was born on April 7, 1970, in San Francisco, California, to a financial planner father and homemaker mother. She claims to have begun seriously writing at the age of 6, when she wrote a 142-page book, titled The Book Worm, which was destroyed in a flood. In 1988, she graduated from Hotchkiss School in Lakeville, Connecticut. In 1992, Tuttle earned her bachelor's degree in English at Princeton University, where she studied under the Nobel Laureate in Literature Toni Morrison, who described Tuttle as "one of the best students I've ever had in my creative writing classes". She also worked as a research assistant to Morrison for the 1992 novel Jazz.
After graduating, Scott applied to work for D. E. Shaw, a quantitative hedge fund in New York, as a research associate to "pay the bills while working on her novels." She was interviewed by Jeff Bezos, who was then a vice-president at the firm. The interview was her first meeting with him.
In 2005, Scott wrote her debut novel, The Testing of Luther Albright, for which she won an American Book Award in 2006. She said that it took her 10 years to write, as she was helping Bezos build Amazon, giving birth to three children, and raising them. Toni Morrison, her former teacher, reviewed the book as "a rarity: a sophisticated novel that breaks and swells the heart." Her second novel, Traps, was published in 2013.
In 1993, Scott and Bezos were married, and in 1994, they both left D. E. Shaw, moved to Seattle, and started Amazon. Scott was one of Amazon's first employees, and was heavily involved in Amazon's early days, working on the company's name, business plan, accounts and shipping early orders. She also negotiated the company's first freight contract. When Amazon began to succeed, Scott took a less involved role in the business, preferring to focus on her family and literary career.
Scott was married to Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon and Blue Origin, from 1993 to 2019. She met him while working as his assistant at D. E. Shaw in 1992; after three months of dating in New York they married and moved to Seattle, Washington, in 1994. They have four children: three sons and one daughter adopted from China.
Their communal property divorce in 2019 left Scott with US$35.6 billion in Amazon stock while her ex-husband retained 75% of the couple's Amazon stock. She became the third-wealthiest woman in the world and one of the wealthiest people overall in April 2019. In July 2020, Scott was ranked the 22nd-richest person in the world by Forbes with a net worth estimated at $36 billion. By September 2020, Scott was named the world's richest woman, and by December 2020, her net worth was estimated at $62 billion.
After her divorce with Bezos, Scott became Mackenzie Scott, with the surname derived from her middle name.
Scott is married to high school chemistry teacher Dan Jewett. The marriage was revealed in Jewett's Giving Pledge letter posted on March 6, 2021.
In May 2019, Scott signed the Giving Pledge, a charitable-giving campaign in which she undertook to give away most of her wealth to charity over her lifetime or in her will; pledge is legally non-binding.
In a July 2020 Medium post, Scott announced that she had donated $1.7 billion to 116 non-profit organizations, with a focus on racial equality, LGBTQ+ equality, democracy, and climate change. Her gifts to HBCUs, Hispanic-serving institutions, tribal colleges and universities, and other colleges surpass $800 million.
In December 2020, less than six months later, Scott stated that she had donated a further $4.15 billion in the previous four months to 384 organizations, with a focus on providing support to people affected by the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and addressing long-term systemic inequities. She said that after July, she wanted her advisory team to give her wealth away faster as the United States struggled with the unprecedented impact of COVID-19 while billionaires' wealth continued to climb. Her team's focus was on "identifying organizations with strong leadership teams and results, with special attention to those operating in communities facing high projected food insecurity, high measures of racial inequity, high local poverty rates, and low access to philanthropic capital."
Scott's 2020 charitable giving totalled $5.8 billion, one of the biggest annual distributions by a private individual to working charities.
- The Testing of Luther Albright. Fourth Estate. 2005. ISBN 978-0-00-719287-8.
- Traps. Knopf. 2013. ISBN 978-0-307-95973-7.