David Koch, Billionaire Conservative Activist Dies At 79, He Was Known For His Political Influence. - Insight Trending

David Koch, Billionaire Conservative Activist Dies At 79, He Was Known For His Political Influence.

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David Koch, Billionaire Conservative Activist Dies At 79, He Was Known For His Political Influence.

David Koch speaking at the 2015 Defending the American Dream Summit at the Greater Columbus Convention Center in Columbus, Ohio."Gage Skidmore"

David Koch, the billionaire conservative activist and philanthropist, who built one of the nation's largest private businesses with his brother Charles and pumped money into conservative groups to help reshape American politics, and have been near the top of Forbes' list of the richest people for decades, died on Friday at his home in Southampton, N.Y. He was 79.

Charles G. Koch confirmed the death in a statement on Friday, which noted that David Koch had been treated for prostate cancer in the past. “Twenty-seven years ago,” the statement said, “David was diagnosed with advanced prostate cancer and given a grim prognosis of a few years to live. David liked to say that a combination of brilliant doctors, state of the art medications and his own stubbornness kept the cancer at bay.”.

“It is with a heavy heart that I announce the passing of my brother David," Charles Koch said in a statement Friday. "Anyone who worked with David surely experienced his giant personality and passion for life." No precise cause was given for David Koch's death.

The Koch brothers' net worth is based on their shared ownership of Koch Industries, one of the largest, most secretive and most influential corporations in the country. This year, David and Charles Koch were worth $50.5 billion each, making their combined net worth larger than that of Bill Gates or Warren Buffett. David has become well known for using his fortune to advance the Koch brothers' conservative political agenda.David always took a back seat to Charles when it came to running the corporation. But he was more willing to be the public face of the privately held firm.

David spent time in New York and was generous in his philanthropy. He gave money to a cancer research center at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. and a major exhibit at a Smithsonian museum in Washington, D.C. 

David also became the face of the Kochs' political activities as well, giving speeches at public events and eventually becoming the poster child of conservative causes, with this face plastered on protest signs wielded by his opponents. For these reasons, David became more widely known than his brother Charles.

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