Professions and Wealth: The Philanthropy of High-Earning Professionals

Professionals in the highest paid fields—including attorneys, financiers, and physicians—are a critical but often overlooked group of donors in the United States. They hold significant financial and social resources for philanthropic purposes with incomes that place them in top quintile of earners, and professional networks and civic skills that stand to benefit nonprofit organizations. In order to better understand how this important group of donors views and practices philanthropy, the Effective Philanthropy Learning Initiative (EPLI) conducted interviews with high-earning professionals in a range of fields across the United States, which showed many commonalities, but also some intriguing differences between groups.