The Daniels Fund, the private charitable foundation established by late cable pioneer Bill Daniels, said it crossed the $1 billion milestone in total giving since its founding with the distribution of $60.5 million in grants and scholarships in 2021.
Founded in 2000, the Daniels Fund’s official mission is to make the lives of Colorado, New Mexico, Utah and Wyoming residents better. The 2021 awards included $44.1 million in grants to nonprofit organizations and $16.4 million in scholarships to students throughout the four-state region.
The Daniels Fund said it crossed the $1 billion milestone in December. Since its founding, the organization has awarded more than 13,000 grants and nearly 4,600 scholarships.
“Bill Daniels had a vision to make life better for people in the states that meant so much to him,” Daniels Fund CEO Hanna Skandera said in a statement. “I believe he would be thrilled to see the impact more than $1 billion invested in our communities has made. Bill’s generosity will continue to change lives for generations to come.”
Daniels died in 2000 after a legendary career in the cable business. Called the “father of cable television,” he started building cable systems shortly after serving as a pilot in the U.S. Navy in both World War II and the Korean War, later switching careers to become a broker of cable deals through his Daniels & Associates. Most of the modern cable industry can trace its roots back to at least one Daniels property, and Daniels himself spread his influence wide, vying for the Republican party nomination for governor of Colorado in 1974 (losing to incumbent John Vanderhoof), helping to found the USFL, developing one of the early regional sports networks (Prime Ticket) all while continuing to fund countless organizations and individuals through his generous philanthropy.
The Daniels Fund makes grants in eight specific areas established by its founder: Aging, Amateur Sports, Disabilities, Drug & Alcohol Addiction, Early Childhood Education, K-12 Education Reform, Homeless & Disadvantaged, and Youth Development. ■
Mike Farrell is senior content producer, finance for Multichannel News/B+C, covering finance, operations and M&A at cable operators and networks across the industry. He joined Multichannel News in September 1998 and has written about major deals and top players in the business ever since. He also writes the On The Money blog, offering deeper dives into a wide variety of topics including, retransmission consent, regional sports networks,and streaming video. In 2015 he won the Jesse H. Neal Award for Best Profile, an in-depth look at the Syfy Network’s Sharknado franchise and its impact on the industry.
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