Philanthropic 50: Jaqueline Mars

The shorter list of Washington cultural and environmental organizations would be the one Jacqueline Mars, the wealthiest woman in the area, doesn’t support. Any sample of her very active philanthropy would start with her gift of $10 million to the Kennedy Center expansion project, currently underway. In 2017, a Washington National Opera gala marked her retirement as its chairman and benefactress, and you know that wasn’t just for handing out free M&M’s (a Mars Inc. product) in the opera intermissions. The list of recent recipients of Mars’ endowments and contributions includes Wolf Trap, the National Gallery of Art and the Piedmont Environmental Council. The list goes on. A horse lover, Mars is the patron saint of the United States Olympic Equestrian Team and a leading supporter of the Great Meadow Foundation and the National Sporting Library in Middleburg.

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