Gwinnett County

Airbnb co-founder gifts $2.1M in shares to graduates of his Gwinnett alma mater

GWINNETT COUNTY, Ga. — Graduates from Brookwood High School in Gwinnett County are now a little bit richer after a gift from their graduation speaker.

Airbnb co-founder Joe Gebbia, who graduated from Brookwood High School in 2000, was the keynote speaker at the school’s commencement on Wednesday night.

During his speech, Gebbia gifted the 890 graduates 22 shares of Airbnb apiece.

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At the close of market on Wednesday, shares of Airbnb were being sold for $110.40 a piece, which means the 22 shares each student received totaled around $2,428.80. For all 890 students, that would bring Gebbia’s total gift to about $2.1 million.

“It comes with a small request. When you have a doubt about yourself, your dreams or whether you’re capable of achieving them, tell yourself, ‘Yes, I can,’” Gebbia told the graduates.

He also suggested that they invest the money from those shares into their dreams.

“When you see those shares years from now, please invest them into your dreams. Don’t spend it all on crypto,” he quipped.

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Earlier this school year, Gebbia established a $700,000 endowment at Brookwood High School. $500,000 of that endowment will go towards the Visual and Creative Arts Program. The remaining $200,000 will relay the school’s track and provide running shoes to the cross country team for the next five years.

“To have someone like Mr. Gebbia come back and give back in a very deliberate way is very, very special,”Brookwood principal Bo Ford said.

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