Miami Dolphins owner Stephen Ross pledged Tuesday to give away to charity the bulk of his estimated $4 billion fortune once he dies, joining a list of prominent billionaires in the so-called “giving pledge.”
In his message on the Giving Pledge website, Ross touted his upbringing in a middle-class Detroit neighborhood as teaching him the value of “giving back.” “I am delighted, grateful and honored to join this important effort in the hope that collectively we can leave the world a little bit better place than we found it,’’ wrote Ross, who turns 73 on Friday.
Billionaires Warren Buffett and Bill Gates helped make the pledge a favorite cause of the nation’s wealthiest, and Ross mentioned both of them by their first names in his announcement, along with Gates’ wife, Melinda.
The announcement comes on the heels of Ross failing to win tax dollars to fund about a third of a $350 million renovation of Sun Life Stadium, and in the midst of renewed focus in how Ross plans to spend his money and what will happen once he dies. In pushing for the tax money, Ross said he wouldn’t move the team but that his children will not inherit the team and that he can’t vouch for future owners. “I can’t rule from the grave,’’ he said last month.