Eli Broad was a renowned business leader who founded and built two Fortune 500 companies — SunAmerica and KB Home — from the ground up over a five-decade career.
Together with his wife, Edye, Mr. Broad became devoted to philanthropy, founding The Eli and Edythe Broad Foundation and The Broad Art Foundation. Through the foundations, the Broads committed more than $5 billion to supporting K-12 public education, scientific and medical research, and the visual and performing arts.
The Broad Foundation’s investments in scientific and medical research have been focused primarily on three areas: genomics, biomedical research, stem cell research, and inflammatory bowel disease.
In an unprecedented partnership with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Harvard University, the Broads in June 2003 announced a $100 million founding gift to create the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard. The institute’s aim is to realize the promise of the human genome to revolutionize clinical medicine and to make knowledge freely available to scientists around the world. Since its inception, the Broads have directed over $1 billion in funding to the Broad Institute.
Recognizing the importance of stem cell research, The Broad Foundation made investments to create stem cell research centers at the University of California, Los Angeles, the University of California, San Francisco, and the University of Southern California. Since 2005 the foundation has directed $113 million to support stem cell research centers in California.
In 2001, the Broads created the Broad Medical Research Program to fund and encourage innovative research to advance the prevention, therapy, or understanding of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). In 2014, BMRP merged with the Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation of America, which is continuing the program’s tradition of funding pilot research projects.
Strong believers in higher education, the Broads provided philanthropic support that has enabled major contributions to universities to support scientific research. Mr. Broad was a life trustee at Caltech, where the Broads created the Broad Fellows Program in Brain Circuitry and gave the cornerstone gift to create the Broad Center for the Biological Sciences. In 2009, The Broad Foundation funded the creation of the Joint Center for Translational Medicine at Caltech and UCLA to advance experimental research into clinical applications.