Profile: Peter L. Buttenwieser (with Terry A. Marek)

Owner, Peter L. Buttenwieser & Associates, <br>Philadelphia, PA

Photo: Getty Images

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Peter L. Buttenwieser, an heir to the Lehman Brothers securities fortune, has been among the most generous Demoncratic donors for nearly a decade. Since 1990, has donated $ million to Democratic causes, and has hosted fundraising events for scores of Democratic candidates. Two years ago, on a single day, he rolled out the welcome mat at lunch for Sen. Paul Wellstone of Minnesota, who was engaged in a hard-fought reelection campaign, and at dinner for the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee.

Buttenweiser also has politics in his family tree: His great-uncle, Herbert Lehman, was a U.S. senator from New York. Still, Buttenweiser has shied away from the usual favors that come with such campaign largesse. He turned down invitations to dine at the White House during the Clinton years. And he has remained particularly focused on a few issues, among them public education. Having spent a decade as a principal at an inner-city school in Philadelphia, Buttenweiser now runs his own educational consulting firm.

“I don’t feel the need to ask for things,” he told the Philadelphia Daily News. “It allows me a certain role in Democratic politics that I couldn’t get by asking for stuff. My strength is not asking.”

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DEMOCRACY DOES NOT EXIST...

without free and fair elections, a vigorous free press, and engaged citizens to reclaim power from those who abuse it.

In this election year unlike any other—against a backdrop of a pandemic, an economic crisis, racial reckoning, and so much daily bluster—Mother Jones' journalism is driven by one simple question: Will America move closer to, or further from, justice and equity in the years to come?

If you're able to, please join us in this mission with a donation today. Our reporting right now is focused on voting rights and election security, corruption, disinformation, racial and gender equity, and the climate crisis. We can’t do it without the support of readers like you, and we need to give it everything we've got between now and November. Thank you.

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