Wes Edens: Billionaire Investor, Philanthropist

Wes Edens is best known as one of the co-owners of the Milwaukee Bucks, the NBA team that has won more games than any other franchise in three different decades. He is also a successful investor at Fortress Investment Group and made his first fortune in real estate. However, many people don’t know that Wes also has a strong philanthropic side.

1. Wes Edens is a philanthropist

Wes Edens has donated millions to charity and continues to give back. In addition to donations to Milwaukee-area schools, he has given generously to Wisconsin organizations such as the Wisconsin Historical Society, the Village of Shorewood, and the University of Wisconsin Foundation.

2. Wes Edens has given much to his alma mater, Oregon State University

Since he graduated from Oregon State University in 1984 with a degree in finance and business administration, Wes has given millions of dollars—$3.5 Million to be exact—to that school to support student scholarships and programs at the university.

3. Wes Edens supports education initiatives worldwide

Wes Edens is determined to help young people everywhere receive an education. He is a big believer in early childhood education, and he serves on the advisory board for the Oklahoma City School District’s private-school voucher program.

He has donated hundreds of thousands of dollars to the Mott Scholarship Fund, a national program that supports college students from low-income households and is dedicated to creating new educational opportunities in inner-city areas.

4. Wes Edens makes giving back a priority

Wes Edens is a major benefactor of civic and community projects. He is one of the principal architects behind the $100 million, 17-story Bear Creek Habitat for Humanity housing development in downtown Milwaukee. He serves on the advisory board for the nonprofit Fluid Learning Foundation, which engages people with disabilities to help shape their communities.

5. Wes Edens is an active philanthropist in his home state of Oregon

Wes Edens’ most recent major contribution, the $1.5 million Edens Hall, was approved by the Oregon State Board of Higher Education in fall 2015.

The 164,000-square-foot building will be part of the university’s College of Business and house classrooms, computer labs, collaboration spaces, and a 100-seat lecture hall.