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Geffen, David (b. 1943)  
 
page: 1  2  

According to Tom King, after Rubell's death in 1989, Geffen began making large donations to individuals and charities that were helping people with AIDS. His gifts include $2,500,000 to AIDS Project Los Angeles, $2,500,000 to Gay Men's Health Crisis of New York, and $1,400,000 to AIDS Action in Washington, D. C.

Geffen's particular support of AIDS causes roused the attention of magazine columnist Michelangelo Signorile who, in 1990, blasted Geffen as a hypocrite for not coming out as a gay man.

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Tom King has noted that Geffen had resisted making an open statement because of a strong belief that his sexual orientation was a private matter. Geffen realized that by virtue of his success, however, he had become a public figure, and at a 1992 benefit for AIDS Project Los Angeles, David Geffen declared that he was a gay man.

Somewhat surprisingly the disclosure did not detract from Geffen's reputation. In fact, it was viewed by many of his associates as a long overdue and honest admission that could only increase his stature in the entertainment industry.

In 1990, Geffen again struck gold by signing alternative bands Nirvana and Sonic Youth to his record label. That same year, Geffen decided it was time to sell Geffen Records and, after a series of tense negotiations, the label was acquired by MCA for $540,000,000.

In 1994, Geffen joined with noted movie director Steven Spielberg and former Disney Studios chairman Jeffrey Katzenberg to form the media conglomerate DreamWorks SKG. Continuing to use the skills he had honed successfully over the previous thirty-plus years, Geffen works behind the scenes at DreamWorks, brokering deals, colluding with friends, and antagonizing his enemies.

In May of 2002, Geffen donated $200,000,000 to the medical school at UCLA--the largest single donation ever given to an American medical school. University officials announced that the school would be renamed the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA.

Nathan G. Tipton

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Michelangelo Signorile is a prolific, and often provocative, writer and activist whose books and articles, radio show, newspaper columns, and website champion the cause of glbtq rights.

arts >> Wenner, Jann

Jann Wenner, founder and editor of the influential music and culture magazine Rolling Stone, was outed in 1995.


    Bibliography
   

King, Tom. The Operator: David Geffen Builds, Buys, and Sells the New Hollywood. New York: Random House, 2000.

Kurutz, Steve. "David Geffen." All Music Guide. www.allmusic.com.

Singular, Stephen. The Rise and Rise of David Geffen. Secaucus, N. J.: Birch Lane Press, 1997.

 

    Citation Information
         
    Author: Tipton, Nathan G.  
    Entry Title: Geffen, David  
    General Editor: Claude J. Summers  
    Publication Name: glbtq: An Encyclopedia of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual,
Transgender, and Queer Culture
 
    Publication Date: 2002  
    Date Last Updated August 3, 2005  
    Web Address www.glbtq.com/arts/geffen_d.html  
    Publisher glbtq, Inc.
1130 West Adams
Chicago, IL   60607
 
    Today's Date  
    Encyclopedia Copyright: © 2002-2006, glbtq, Inc.  
    Entry Copyright © 2002, glbtq, Inc.  
 

 

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