Bernie MarcusBernie Marcus plans to give away nearly all of his money — not just half of it.

Forbes estimates Marcus to be worth $1.5 billion, although Marcus would not confirm that figure in a recent interview.

Bernie Marcus

Two months ago, Marcus, 81, became one of about 40 wealthy individuals who pledged to give away at least half of their fortunes to charity, as part of a campaign by Bill Gates and Warren Buffett.

In an interview last week, Marcus said the lion’s share will be donated. He’s not leaving anywhere close to half of his money to his family. They will be taken care of, but not excessively, he said.

“My kids are not going to end up with my money. They’re OK,” Marcus said. “I’ve been giving away money for 25 years. … The vast majority will go to charity — in my life and after.”

Marcus said he’s had “long conversations” with Buffett about charitable giving. Buffett also is giving away nearly all of his money.

Marcus, co-founder of Home Depot who donated about $250 million to launch the Georgia Aquarium, gives to a wide variety of causes.

He founded the Marcus Institute, which provides comprehensive services for kids with developmental disabilities. And his Marcus Foundation focuses on children, medical research, free enterprise, Jewish causes and the community.

by Henry Unger