UPDATED: June 10, 2012; 9:13 a.m. EST
Warren Buffett is continuing to make good on his promise to donate most of his $44.1 billion to charity.
The third richest person in the world gave about 18.4 million of his company’s Class B shares, valued at $1.52 billion, to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Bloomberg Businessweek reported Saturday.
Giving generous donations to the Gates Foundation, which aims to improve education and health care has become an annual tradition for Buffett, a plan initiated in 2006, according to the Associated Press.
Besides giving to his own foundation as well as his children's foundations, Buffett also gave shares worth nearly $20 million to eight unnamed charities, and 10 shares each to 15 elementary school children that were finalists in a business contest, according to the AP.
Buffett, who has long touted the obligation of the rich to share their wealth with those in need, teaches by example.
Last year, the mogul gave $1.78 billion to four charities, with the majority of it going to the Gates Foundation, according to Reuters.
But the chairman and chief executive officer of Berkshire Hathaway Inc. is just as intent on donating as he is on motivating others to do the same.
Together with Bill Gates, Buffett has inspired 81 billionaires to join the giving pledge, an initiative that asks the mega rich to give over half of their fortunes to charity.
"Philanthropy alone cannot repair all of the social injustice in our country or the world,” Buffett wrote on the Giving Pledge's website. “It can, however, inspire good will, spark innovation and provide thought leadership.”
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