Harvard University Loses Another Billionaire Donor Following President’s Disastrous Hearing

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Billionaire donor Len Blavatnik’s family foundation is pausing donations to Harvard University following a disastrous congressional hearing in which the school’s president was widely criticized for her response to antisemitic speech, according to Bloomberg.

Several billionaires have paused or halted donations to elite universities following their response to antisemitism on campus. Blavatnik’s family foundation has given at least $270 million to Harvard, but is now pausing donations as donors urge the university to more aggressively handle rising antisemitism, according to Bloomberg. (RELATED: Harvard President Requests Even More Corrections To Her Academic Work As Plagiarism Accusations Mount)

“The problem Harvard has is that all their sources of revenue are strained,” David Bergeron, a retired deputy assistant secretary in the US Education Department, told Bloomberg. “Their ability to raise money is clearly strained, and their ability to leverage federal programs is potentially at risk.”

WASHINGTON, DC – DECEMBER 05: Dr. Claudine Gay, President of Harvard University, testifies before the House Education and Workforce Committee at the Rayburn House Office Building on December 05, 2023 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images)

The Wexner Foundation, founded by billionaire Leslie Wexner, announced in October that it would no longer be funding Harvard due to the university’s failure “to take a clear and unequivocal stand against the barbaric murders of innocent Israeli civilians” on Oct. 7.

Israeli billionaire Idan Ofer resigned from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government board on Oct. 12 due to Gay’s response to a letter written by over 30 student organizations blaming Israel for the Oct. 7 Hamas attacks.

Gay, who was seated alongside University of Pennsylvania President Liz Magill and Massachusetts of Technology President Sally Kornbluth, refused to say if calling for the genocide of Jews violated the college’s code of conduct at a Dec. 5 House Education Committee hearing.

The House Education Committee opened an investigation into the university’s “learning environments, policies, and disciplinary procedures” following the Dec. 5 testimony from Gay. More than 70 Representatives, both Republican and Democratic, called on Gay, Magill and Kornbluth to resign following their testimony.

Several outlets alleged Gay plagiarized some of her academic papers following the House Education Committee hearing, and the Harvard Corporation, the university’s highest governing body, admitted on Dec. 12 they’d known of plagiarism accusations against Gay since late October.

Harvard did not immediately respond to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment.

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