UN Foundation Pays Tribute to Founder and Chair Ted Turner

Turner created the United Nations Foundation 25 years ago

Atlanta, GA

December 8, 2023


Megan Rabbitt

The Board of Directors of the United Nations Foundation and luminaries from across the United Nations, public and private sectors, and media paid tribute to the Foundation’s Founder and Chair, Ted Turner last night in Atlanta, Georgia. Together with members of the Turner family, they celebrated Turner’s impact and legacy to mark 25 years since he created the UN Foundation to support the UN and advance UN causes. Elizabeth Cousens, President and CEO of the UN Foundation said:

“Ted revolutionized philanthropy when he invested over a third of his net worth to support the United Nations by creating the UN Foundation — pioneering a new generation of philanthropic leadership and activism that we take for granted today but began with Ted.

“In 25 years, the UN Foundation has more than tripled Ted’s investment through collaboration, leading to nearly $2 billion in support to the UN and over $1 billion in support to UN causes. Spanning the tenures of three UN Secretary-Generals, the UN Foundation has worked alongside the UN on global innovations to improve our collective health, protect our planet, expand opportunity for girls and women, and build a better world for future generations. From saving tens of millions of lives through measles vaccination as a founding partner of the Measles & Rubella Partnership, to spearheading communications for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, to creating platforms like Girl Up and Our Future Agenda to empower young leaders around the world, to creating the largest private fund for the COVID-19 response that raised $257 million to support the World Health Organization’s global pandemic response, the UN Foundation has been a platform for strategic innovation and impact in collective problem-solving.

“Ted had the foresight to realize that global problems needed global solutions and that the United Nations was an indispensable institution in an interdependent world. He put his money where his mouth was, and his vision is more urgent now than ever.”

Laura Turner Seydel, Director of the Turner Foundation, Chair of the Captain Planet Foundation, and a member of the UN Foundation Board of Directors said:

“My father said the UN Foundation was the best investment he ever made. It was an investment in our planet, and in our collective future, in human rights, and human dignity. Our family is enormously proud of how far-reaching the Foundation’s impact has been. We see the challenges people are facing around the world every day, and it’s clear: people and planet are in trouble if we don’t act soon, and together. Dad always believed that everyone, everywhere can and needs to be part of the solution, and the UN is the only place where people can truly come together to make a difference and achieve real lasting peace in the world.”

Baroness Valerie Amos, Vice Chair of the UN Foundation Board of Directors and Master of University College Oxford added:

“Ted is truly one-of-a-kind. He is a visionary and a trailblazer in every sense, with an incomparable knack for galvanizing people around big, bold ideas to make our world better for everyone. He has been a friend, mentor, and inspiration to all of us. His life is a testament to the impact that one person can have on the lives of many. It was an honor to join my fellow UN Foundation Board Members in paying tribute to our Founder and Chair, Ted Turner.”

About The UN Foundation
For 25 years, the UN Foundation has built novel innovations and partnerships to support the United Nations and help solve global problems at scale. As an independent charitable organization, the Foundation was created to work closely with the United Nations to address humanity’s greatest challenges and drive global progress. Learn more at www.unfoundation.org