SOURCE: The Tech Museum of Innovation

The Tech Museum of Innovation

July 30, 2015 12:05 ET

Philanthropic Power Couple John and Tashia Morgridge to Receive 2015 James C. Morgan Global Humanitarian Award at the Tech Awards

SAN JOSE, CA--(Marketwired - July 30, 2015) - The Tech Museum of Innovation announced today that John and Tashia Morgridge -- who intend to give away most of their wealth to education, conservation and medical research causes -- have been named the 12th recipients of the James C. Morgan Global Humanitarian Award. Sponsored by Applied Materials, this award honors individuals whose broad vision and leadership address the world's most challenging problems.

John P. Morgridge joined Cisco Systems as President and CEO in 1998. Two years later he took the company public, transforming it into a tech powerhouse; he became chairman emeritus in 2006. Tashia Morgridge studied education at the University of Wisconsin before becoming a special education teacher. In their married life, they developed a passion for charitable giving.

"Jim Morgan is a good friend and we have the highest respect for his family because of the scope of their generosity, so it's more than just an award for us," said John Morgridge.

The goal of the couple's philanthropy has been to improve education worldwide, and they have done much of that giving through the TOSA Foundation, named after the high school where they met. The Morgridges have supported the University of Wisconsin's research facilities, special education programs and scholarships, founding the Morgridge Center for Public Service and establishing the Morgridge Institute for Research, a biomedical institute. They are also generous supporters of literacy programs in East Palo Alto, Calif.; Tashia has long devoted herself to improving educational opportunities in disadvantaged neighborhoods.

Internationally they donate principally through CARE, an organization dedicated to fighting poverty, and The Nature Conservancy.

"Education is a powerful tool for improving lives around the globe," said Gary Dickerson, president and CEO of Applied Materials. "The Morgridges' passion and influence to expand educational opportunities in underserved communities is helping to increase living standards and combat poverty."

Said Tim Ritchie, President and CEO of The Tech: "John and Tashia Morgridge's decision to commit their lives and fortune to philanthropy is already having a profound impact on both the causes they support and the people they influence. If the world wonders whether Silicon Valley cares about creating a better future for others, it can look to John and Tashia Morgridge and know that a tide of philanthropic support is rising. Others will contribute to that rising tide because of them."

In 2010, The Morgridges took the Giving Pledge, joining philanthropists like Bill Gates, Warren Buffett and Mark Zuckerberg in a promise to give away the majority of their wealth in their lifetime.

The Morgridges join a stellar roster of previous Global Humanitarian Award winners, including media pioneer Ted Turner (2014); inventor Dean Kamen (2013); Infosys founder N.R. Narayana Murthy (2012); social entrepreneur Jeff Skoll (2011); education and cross-cultural dialogue advocate Queen Rania Al Abdullah of Jordan (2010); and Nobel laureate and former U.S. Vice President Al Gore (2009). Applied Materials Chairman Emeritus James C. Morgan, who inspired the award more than a decade ago, was its first recipient, in 2004.

This year marks the 15th annual gala of The Tech Awards. It will take place Thursday, Nov. 12, 2015 at the San Jose McEnery Convention Center. The event attracts more than 1,300 guests in a celebration of technology benefitting humanity. In addition to the Global Humanitarian Award, 10 laureates who are using technology to improve our world will be recognized. Gala tickets available here:

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About the Tech Museum of Innovation

The Tech is a hands-on technology and science museum for people of all ages and backgrounds. The museum -- located in the Capital of Silicon Valley -- is a non-profit experiential learning resource established to engage people in exploring and experiencing applied technologies affecting their lives. The Tech's mission is to inspire the innovator in everyone.

About Applied Materials

Applied Materials (NASDAQ: AMAT) is the global leader in materials engineering solutions for the semiconductor, flat panel display and solar photovoltaic industries. Its technologies help make innovations like smartphones, flat screen TVs and solar panels more affordable and accessible to consumers and businesses around the world. Learn more at

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