Lisa Brennan-Jobs said she would give her father's billions to The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation if she could

Lisa Brennan-Jobs said she would give her father's billions to The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation if she could

steve jobs

Sean Gallup/Getty Images

Steve Jobs.

  • Lisa Brennan-Jobs' upcoming memoir, "Small Fry," describes her relationship with her father, Apple founder Steve Jobs.
  • Brennan-Jobs received an inheritance after her father's death, but his $20 billion fortune is controlled by Laurene Powell Jobs.
  • In an interview with The New York Times, Brennan-Jobs said she would donate Jobs' billions to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation if she could.

Though Lisa Brennan-Jobs received millions of dollars in inheritance money after her father died, she does not have control over the allocation of the Apple founder's $20 billion in assets.

If she was in charge, Brennan-Jobs would donate Steve Jobs' money to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, she told The New York Times while discussing her upcoming memoir, "Small Fry."

Complimentary Tech Event
Transform talent with learning that works
Capability development is critical for businesses who want to push the envelope of innovation.Discover how business leaders are strategizing around building talent capabilities and empowering employee transformation.Know More

The statement may seem surprising in light of Steve Jobs' longstanding rivalry with Bill Gates' Microsoft. But Brennan-Jobs says she's impressed with the Gates Foundation, which spends billions to fund work in education, emergency relief, and global health, among other issues.

"Would it be too perverse?" she said to The Times. "I feel like the Gates Foundation is really doing good stuff, and I think I would just hot potato it away."


Brennan-Jobs intended her memoir to be a nuanced depiction of her family, though she fears readers will focus too much on the moments Jobs was vicious to her, according to The Times. Some of the details paint a damning picture, including anecdotes about Jobs refusing to install heat in Brennan-Jobs' bedroom, forgetting her birthdays, and saying she smelled "like a toilet."

Powell Jobs, her children, and Jobs' sister told The Times that Brennan-Jobs' book "differs dramatically" from their memories of the Apple founder.

In his will, Jobs left his fortune to Powell Jobs, who runs the philanthropic organization Emerson Collective. Over the past few years, Emerson has purchased a majority stake in The Atlantic, received a $10 million donation from Golden State Warriors star Kevin Durant to expand the College Track program (which supports students through college), and committed $50 million to her XQ project for rethinking high schools.

Powell Jobs also bought the second-largest stake in a holding company that owns the NBA's Wizards, the NHL's Capitals, and more.

Emerson was set up as a limited liability company, which means it is not required to reveal details about its spending and assets. The Gates Foundation's setup, meanwhile, entails detailed annual reports and greater transparency in spending.