Modest Seattle Woman Donates Entire $10 Million Fortune Earned From Trading Stocks to 17 State Schools
From The Good News Network by Andy Corbley
North Seattle College, Seattle Central College, and 15 other community schools of higher education around Washington State were each shocked to find a check worth $550,000 sitting in their mailboxes.
The return address was the estate of Eva Gordon, a Eugene, Oregon native who recently passed away at the age of 105, atop a $10 million fortune she had accumulated entirely by savvy investing.
“She was a very intelligent woman, meticulous record keeper, very organized, and had the wherewithal to buy stocks and hold on to them—that a lot of people at that age didn’t really do too much,” said John Jacobs, Gordon’s godson and personal representative for the estate, according to The Guardian.
Renton Technical College, one of the 17 lucky schools, announced it would use the money to set up a grant and scholarship fund for underprivileged students, particularly those with financial barriers to attending school.
Although she never attended college herself, Gordon had a passion for education and childcare, and during her lifetime donated her time and money to different child education programs.
Jacobs informed the colleges that, while there are no stipulations in Gordon’s will and testament for how the money should be used, she would have liked the idea of it going to help the disadvantaged of her adopted home state.
An American Story
Gordon moved to Seattle after high school where she started working as a trading assistant in an investment firm. Hers is the classic American success story of turning know-how and diligence into long stable financial returns.
Her $10 million fortune, hidden entirely from her friends’ knowledge, was amassed over long years of buying stock in now-famous Northwest companies like Nordstrom, Starbucks, and Microsoft; holding onto them for decades.
Gordon kept this vast sum mostly a secret, which provided a real shock to her friends and relatives when they learned of it.
In 1964 she married Ed Gordon, a stockbroker, but the two never had children. Jacobs recounted that they had lived a reserved lifestyle, and that it was in the final decade of her life when the stocks she held onto for so long really began to grow. Before then, Jacobs said it became a running joke that “if it was time to go out for lunch or dinner, she always had an Applebee’s coupon”.