Philanthropy's Prime-Time Player

Former businessman's hands-on, 'eyeball-to-eyeball' style of giving is the inspiration for a new TV drama

Teddy Rist is having a tough time. The playboy businessman lost his son a year ago, his wife divorced him, and an isolated act of hero­ism has left him questioning what he's doing with his life. The solution to his malaise? Philanthropy.

Mr. Rist, the lead character in NBC's new drama The Philanthropist, sets off in the series premiere June 24 to engage in some "vigilante philanthropy." His hijinks-filled do-goodery takes him, in the first episode, to Nigeria, where he