Citadel CEO Griffin donates $1.5 million to Navy SEAL Foundation – Finance News

on Sep30

29 September 2017 | 5:00 pm

Billionaire Citadel CEO Ken Griffin, the richest man in Illinois, has donated $600 million to education, the arts and other causes during his lifetime, according to comments at a Navy SEAL Foundation event this week.

At the fundraiser, which feted 900 people at the Field Museum on Sept. 27, the event host, Longford Capital Management Chairman Bill Strong, detailed Griffin’s philanthropy in remarks introducing him as the Navy SEAL Patriot Award recipient of the year. (Past recipients include Disney’s Robert Iger and Clint Eastwood.) Griffin also gave $1.5 million to the foundation, helping it take in $5 million this year at the Chicago fundraiser.

Griffin, whose hedge fund is one of the nation’s largest, took the stage for a conversation with Strong and David Petraeus, the retired Army general and CIA director, to discuss a variety of business and geopolitical topics, including threats by North Korea, cybersecurity and leadership.

Griffin said the U.S. economy is in “reasonably good” shape, with “extraordinarily low inflation,” “decent” economic growth, and rising median family incomes.

With respect to North Korea, he expressed concern about U.S. actions sending the message to allies around the world that the U.S. only focuses on threats when the U.S. itself is in danger. “That’s a very long-term problem in terms of the credibility of America’s commitment to protect many nations in this world in the event of a nuclear strike,” Griffin said. He added that the financial markets have “largely discounted” the risk of an event precipitated by North Korea.

On U.S. tax reform, Griffin said he supports efforts on the personal tax front to eliminate the alternative minimum tax and increase the standard deduction, while cutting the deduction for state and local income taxes.

With respect to corporate taxes, he reiterated his opposition to cutting taxes too much, saying that dropping that rate to one of the lowest in the world would be a mistake. “We need to have a competitive rate, not the lowest rate,” he said.



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