Barnett Davis II

Barnett received a law degree, Magna Cum Laude, from Boston University and an MBA from the Haas School of Business at the University of California at Berkeley. Subsequent to receiving his MBA, Mr. Davis worked as a real estate developer from 1999 through the present, developing several cutting edge structures for establishing and funding charitable endeavors. As Mr. Davis’ professional aspirations were increasingly focused on these charitable projects, Mr. Davis left the private sector and created the Low Income Family Enrichment Foundation (the “LIFE Foundation”) generating millions in savings for social services and funding programs that make a real difference in the lives of those in need.


Foundation legacy The Davis family has a long and storied history of philanthropy and Mr. Davis, through the LIFE Foundation, intends to use funds generated by his innovative real estate structures to carry the Davis tradition of service and support of the community into the modern age. Many of the charitable endeavors started by the Davis family in the late 1800’s and early 1900’s still serve those in need today.

Mr. Davis’ great grandmother, Mrs. Anna Jacobs Davis (also known as Mrs. Barnett Davis) was involved in many charitable endeavors in the greater Pittsburgh area. Born in Russia in 1865, Annie emigrated at the age of eight with her mother and two siblings to the United States in 1873. The family settled in Pittsburgh, where she married Barnett Davis, a watchmaker and raised ten children to adulthood. Over 100 years ago, Mrs. Davis successfully led efforts to secure a place for the poor and the sick to die in peace and comfort; for medical students to practice their profession; and for everyone- regardless of race, religion or creed- to receive the finest medical care. Working with 17 other women, they sought out the poor and the sick, rescuing victims suffering from typhoid, tuberculosis and pneumonia from cots in the cellars of the city’s Hill District.

Within a few years the group opened membership to men, expanded its fund raising, and, in 1905, established the Montefiore Hospital Association. A year later the association paid $60,000 for a Hill District site where in 1908 it dedicated the Montefiore Hospital. Among its initiatives, the hospital opened the city’s first night clinic for social diseases and made periodic health checkups possible for the underprivileged. Today, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC) Montefiore is a member of the UPMC Presbyterian family of hospitals. Services offered by UPMC Montefiore include the Comprehensive Lung Center, Benedum Geriatric Center, Facial Nerve Center, Ambulatory Surgery Center, General Internal Medicine physician offices, and medical and surgical inpatient units. Anna Jacobs Davis is known as “The Mother of Montefiore Hospital.”

In addition to providing a brief glimpse of the Davis families philanthropic history, we have provided details regarding Anna Jacobs Davis’ philanthropic activities to illustrate the continuing impact of her charitable endeavors. Although the current structure of the entities may not reflect Annie’s original vision, the fruits of her endeavors have endured the test of time to continue good works. The LIFE Foundations use of real estate to fund charitable endeavors will provide the flexibility and revenue to help those in need long after our founder’s demise. The flexibility provided by the LIFE Foundations objectives and real estate assets will allow it to address changing needs as they evolve, to optimize our impact on society and fund worthy projects well into the next millennium.