The founder of the Domino's Pizza franchise chain has joined a growing list of American millionaires who have pledged to donate at least half of their wealth to charitable causes of their choice. Domino's Pizza founder Tom Monaghan, 73, has joined "The Giving Pledge," a $125 billion charity drive organized by Bill Gates that includes some of the wealthiest families in the world.
Bill Gates and Warren Buffett started the charity after recognizing that the current recession economy was cutting into charitable giving in the United States. The pair has persuaded 40 other millionaires from the Forbes Magazine list of 400 richest Americans to join them in their cause.
Monaghan's letter of intent to The Giving Pledge stated “I know that I cannot take any of it with me, so it has long been my desire to use the material resources that I have been blessed with to help others in the most meaningful ways possible. As I built and expanded Domino's Pizza for 38 years, my desire to spread the faith also grew." Monaghan added, "When Bill Gates recently contacted me, I was more than happy to participate. I've already committed virtually everything I have to charities."
Monaghan grew up as an orphan after his father died on Christmas Eve when he was only 4 years old. Tom and his brother were sent to a Michigan orphanage and a subsequent series of foster homes until he purchased his first pizza store in 1960. That first Ypsilanti, Michigan location eventually grew into today's 9,000-store strong, worldwide Domino's Pizza franchise.