Can't Take It With You: The Art of Making and Giving Money

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9780471657637: Can't Take It With You: The Art of Making and Giving Money
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Praise for Can't Take It With You

"Lewis Cullman is one of this nation's major and most generous philanthropists. Here he combines a fascinating autobiography of a life in finance with a powerful expose' of how the business of giving works, including some tips for all of us on how to leverage our money to enlarge our largesse."
-Walter Cronkite

"Lewis Cullman has woven a rich and seamless fabric from the varied strands of his business, philanthropic, and personal life. Every chapter is filled with wonderful insights and amusing anecdotes that illuminate a life that has been very well lived. This book has been written with an honesty and candor that should serve as a model for others."
-David Rockefeller

"Lewis Cullman's memoir made me feel good. A vibrant, thoughtful, and gracious man has written a wonderful tale about living a full life and giving back a lot to society."
-Arthur Levitt
Former Chairman, Securities and Exchange Commission

"I was so enjoyably exhausted after reading the book-I can only imagine living the life! It seems there is no good cause that Lewis has not supported, no good business opportunity that Lewis has missed, and no fun that Lewis has not had."
-Agnes Gund
President Emerita, The Museum of Modern Art

"Now I know that venture capitalism and horse trading are almost as much fun as looking for new species in the Amazon. This book is exceptionally well written. The prose is evocative, vibrant, and inspirational."
-Edward O. Wilson
Professor Emeritus, Harvard University
Honorary Curator in Entomology, Harvard's Museum of Comparative Zoology

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From the Inside Flap:

As a pioneer in the world of finance, Lewis Cullman–the father of the leveraged buyout (LBO)–made millions of dollars over a long and distinguished career. As one of the most generous philanthropists of our time, he has also given much of this money back to society in a variety of ways. In this inspiring memoir, Cullman takes readers on an incredible journey that spans the course of eight decades and reveals how he succeeded both in business and in life.

With wit, detail, and a keen feel for narrative, Cullman takes you inside the hectic days and nights of the first-ever LBO and shows how the leveraged buyout of Orkin Exterminating Company actually came to fruition. You’ll also learn how Cullman successfully wheeled and dealed his way through numerous other LBOs–from Allied Graphic Arts to At-A-Glance®.

Along the way you’ll also be introduced to a very personal side of Cullman, including his struggles to find himself while attending Yale University, the family alma mater, his attempts to escape his father’s career expectations, and the way he coped with his first wife’s mental illness. Through each phase of his life, Cullman vividly captures his personal challenges while detailing the professional routes he took–from Navy ensign to weather-service entrepreneur and dealmaker–to succeed his way.

Can’t Take It With You: The Art of Making and Giving Money deconstructs the art of the deal from the man who created an industry and reveals how Cullman and his wife Dorothy applied the principles of the LBO to philanthropy. Cullman discusses how he began giving money away in ways that would really make a difference, while making a case for the reformation of private foundations.

In his Gospel of Wealth, published in 1889, Andrew Carnegie advised the rich to spend the first half of their lives accumulating wealth and the second half distributing the surplus to those causes "best calculated to produce the most beneficial results for the community." Lewis Cullman has followed this advice, becoming one of the most respected businessmen and philanthropists of our time in the process.

About the Author:

Lewis B. Cullman was CEO of Cullman Ventures Inc. He originated the LBO in 1963 with the leveraged buyout of Orkin Exterminating Co., and continued to amass a fortune via LBOs. The jewel in his crown, At-A-Glance®, produced nearly ninety percent of all calendars purchased in America each year. Cullman sold the company to Mead in 1999 so that he could devote all his energies to philanthropy. He is also one of New York’s most generous and dedicated benefactors of the arts, sciences, and education.

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Lewis B. Cullman
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