Donor Profile: The Irene Diamond Fund

Venture philanthropist Irene Diamond, who enjoyed a prior career as a notable Hollywood story-editor and talent scout, and her husband Aaron founded the Irene Diamond Fund to bring to life her passionate devotion to the performing arts and advancing medical research. In 2012, the Diamond Fund made a major contribution to the Engelberg Center for Health Care Reform at Brookings, providing critical resources to enable Center Director Alice Rivlin and her team to continue leading the national debate over health care and ways to reduce costs while improving quality of care.

Peter Kimmelman, Jane Silver, Al Engelberg
Then-Vice President of Economic Studies Karen Dynan, Irene Diamond Fund Treasurer Peter Kimmelman, Irene Diamond Fund President Jane Silver, Brookings Trustee Al Engelberg, and Brookings President Strobe Talbott. (Ralph Alswang)

The Diamond Fund’s investment established a Fund for Health Care Innovation that supports new, novel and cost-effective reforms, and the Irene Diamond Fellowship for Public Health Leadership, which will match health care reform efforts with key public health goals, such as promoting healthier behaviors and preventing illnesses and disease complications.

“Irene Diamond cared passionately about achieving real impact with her giving,” said Peter Kimmelman, treasurer and a director of the Irene Diamond Fund. “We at the Diamond Fund are thrilled to make this grant; it ensures the continuation of the Engelberg Center's essential work in health care reform.” He added, “It is hard to imagine a more critically important issue in our nation’s future and this is a fitting legacy for her lifelong dedication to improving people's health and their lives.”

“The Irene Diamond Fund’s investment in Brookings comes at a crucial time in our national debate over how best to protect the health of citizenry and our economy,” said Strobe Talbott, president of the Brookings Institution. “Moreover, that debate will be with us for years to come. The U.S. health care system needs reform, and there’s no better way to ensure that it’s made more effective than with the kind of careful thought and systematic, evidence-based research to which Brookings and the Engelberg Center are committed.”