At Yurie Systems Inc., which he founded, Kim pioneered a revolutionary ATM switch – no, not the automated teller machine but a device most people use but are unlikely to have heard of called the asynchronous transfer mode. In 1998, he sold Yurie to Lucent Technologies for $1 billion, of which his share was $550 million – one reason why the Korean-born immigrant can rate highly in the philanthropic world, with a strong focus on raising technology standards. His Information Technology Endowment Fund has made contributions to Johns Hopkins University ($1 million), Stanford and other schools. The reason why the University of Maryland named an engineering building after him was not because he’s an alumnus, but because in 2016 he pledged $5 million towards its construction and faculty research. Kim is one of the founding partners of Venture Philanthropy Partners, an investment organization helping youth of low-income families. He is also a minority owner of Washington’s Monumental Sports and Entertainment (See Ted Leonsis).
Philanthropic 50: Jeong and Cindy Kim