News and analysis
February 06, 2011

No. 19 (tied): Ming Hsieh

Philip Channing

Ming Hsieh

Amount donated in 2010: $50-million

Beneficiary: University of Southern California

Donor’s background: Mr. Hsieh founded AMAX Information Technologies, a computer server and storage systems company, in Fremont, Calif.; and Cogent, a Pasadena, Calif., company that develops automated fingerprint-identification systems.

Mr. Hsieh, 55, pledged $50-million to the University of Southern California, in Los Angeles, to establish and endow a new institute for research into the field of nanomedicine to help develop new drugs and other types of therapy to treat cancer. He has paid $10-million toward the pledge and plans to pay the remainder in the coming years.

Originally from Sheyang, China, Mr. Hsieh emigrated to the United States when he was 24. He said he made the gift to show his appreciation for the opportunities in the United States and to commemorate the 30th anniversary of his arrival in the country.

Mr. Hsieh graduated from the university in 1983 with a bachelor of science in electrical engineering and a master of science in the same discipline in 1984. He serves on the university’s Board of Trustees and in 2006 donated $35-million to the institution.

—Maria Di Mento

View more profiles of donors who gave the most in 2010.