Lyda Hill to Join Dolly Parton, Others Among Philanthropy Medal Recipients

Local philanthropist and business leader Lyda Hill is among the 2022 Carnegie Medal of Philanthropy honorees, along with Dolly Parton, Kenyan industrialist Manu Chandaria, and Lynn and Stacy Schusterman of the Oklahoma investment family. 

The award, presented by the international family of Carnegie institutions, debuted in 2001 to recognize innovative philanthropists and elevate the importance and relevance of philanthropic contributions in society. It’s normally given every two years, but wasn’t awarded in 2021 because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The honorees will be recognized during a private ceremony in October in New York. To date, more than 65 philanthropists have been honored with the medal.

“Today we acknowledge the significant contributions of five philanthropists who are energizing the field of philanthropy through their forward-looking goals for the world, including in Africa through the work of Manu Chandaria,” said Sarah Davidson, chief executive of Carnegie UK and a member of the medal selection committee. “This is also an opportunity to celebrate the giving by women who continue to strengthen the sector through their fresh perspectives and long-term commitments. Lyda Hill, Dolly Parton, Lynn Schusterman, and Stacy Schusterman are leading the way in motivating the next generation of women philanthropists.”

Hill was selected to be among the honorees “for investments in the life sciences, including cancer and mental health research and treatment; conservation; supporting women in STEM fields and inspiring girls to be interested in STEM careers; and empowering community-based nonprofits to maximize impact.”

She was also People Newspapers’ Park Cities Person of the Year for 2021.

While honoree Dolly Parton’s $1 million donation to Vanderbilt University Medical Center drew a lot of headlines, Hill, through Lyda Hill Philanthropies, was also an early donor to the work that led to the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine, the Associated Press reported.

“I invested before it was anything,” Hill told The Associated Press. “One of the things that Warren Buffett said that stuck with me was, ‘Don’t do what other people can do and will do. Do what other people can’t do and won’t do. And take risks.’ I have had to apply that to my philanthropic investments.”

For more information, visit the Carnegie Medal of Philanthropy’s website.

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Rachel Snyder

Rachel Snyder, deputy editor at People Newspapers, joined the staff in 2019, returning to her native Dallas-Fort Worth after starting her career at community newspapers in Oklahoma. One of her stories won first place in its category in the Oklahoma Press Association’s Better Newspaper Contest in 2018. She’s a fan of puns and community journalism, not necessarily in that order. You can reach her at [email protected]

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