The Ariadne Getty Foundation Pledges $15M to GLAAD and Brings LGBTQ Inclusion to the World Stage at the World Economic Forum in Davos

February 1, 2018

Forward progress is a pendulum and last week GLAAD and The Harris Poll released an alarming poll that showed LGBTQ acceptance is beginning to swing in the wrong direction.

But The Ariadne Getty Foundation is not going to let that happen.

The Foundation’s President, Ari Getty, announced a $15M lead gift to fund GLAAD’s work to stop the rollback of LGBTQ acceptance and move the global LGBTQ community forward.

The gift was announced during a LGBTQ panel discussion during the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. The annual meeting welcomes the foremost political, business and other leaders of society to shape global, regional and industry agendas. The mission of the World Economic Forum is simple: “improve the state of the world.”

GLAAD and The Ariadne Getty Foundation’s panel “Progress in Peril: How Business, Philanthropy and Media Can Lead to Achieving 100% Acceptance for LGBTQ People” included notable panelists and speakers:

  • Beth Brooke-Marciniak: Global Vice Chair, Public Policy, EY
  • Serge Dumont: Vice Chairman, Omnicom Group Inc., Chairman, Omnicom Asia Pacific
  • Jim Fitterling: President and Chief Operating Officer, Dow Chemical Company
  • Franz Paasche: Vice President, Corporate Affairs, Paypal
  • Bozoma Saint John, Chief Brand Officer, Uber
  • Brad Smith, President and Chief Legal Officer, Microsoft

Check out the panel here:


This panel was one of the few LGBTQ-inclusive events during the World Economic Forum and is hopefully the start of broader inclusion.

GLAAD President and CEO Sarah Kate Ellis introduced the event and reviewed the findings of GLAAD and The Harris Poll’s Accelerating Acceptance report and the rollback of LGBTQ acceptance.

CNN International’s intrepid reporter and human rights advocate in his own right, Richard Quest moderated the panel.

During the panel he asked Ari Getty about her gift to fund the newly launched GLAAD Media Institute. The GLAAD Media Institute is a training, consulting, and research venture that builds upon and furthers GLAAD’s successful legacy of leveraging media, business, social media and cultural institutions to effect positive change with advocates around the world. GLAAD aims to put 10,000 advocates around the world through the GLAAD Media Institute training over the next three years with the goal of increasing coverage of LGBTQ people and issues and hold elected officials accountable.

The Ariadne Getty Foundation, under the leadership of Ari Getty, improves the lived experiences of marginalized individuals and communities through large-scale investments and hands-on advocacy. The $15 million lead gift will be dedicated to building the Institute as well as advance GLAAD’s work to invest in LGBTQ ventures, including media and small businesses, that have social impact worldwide.

Ari received a standing ovation in the room after the gift was announced. Quest asked about her inspiration for the gift and Ari cited her two out children, August and Nats. Her daughter Nats was in the room and got called onstage to thank her mom.

“We cannot go backwards. With LGBTQ acceptance slipping, I have no choice but to use my power to create a better world for LGBTQ youth. The time is now to stand by marginalized communities and promote a better world for all. GLAAD has always been the leader in creating a better world for LGBTQ people. This lead gift will not only ensure that work continues, but will hopefully inspire others to join us in our pursuit of 100 percent acceptance.”

The panelists discussed their company’s varied initiatives to push for LGBTQ equality. Quest also made a poignant point around broader LGBTQ inclusion in the World Economic Forum.

“This important lead gift continues Ari’s legacy of strategic philanthropy to improve the lives of countless people around the world,” said GLAAD President and CEO Sarah Kate Ellis. “We will not stop until 100 percent LGBTQ acceptance is the norm everywhere. Though this White House is trying to turn the tide against LGBTQ people, this critical lead gift will enable GLAAD to both leverage the media to change the world, and invest in the best storytelling to bring to life the importance and value of achieving 100 percent LGBTQ acceptance.”