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BUSINESS LIST CIA X560 | ADVOCATE.COM 7. Microsoft — Redmond, Wash.
HRC Equality Index Score: 100

One of the wealthiest nerds in America is also an advocate of human rights — including gay rights — around the world. Microsoft founder and chairman Bill Gates is on track to give away most of his money during his lifetime, fulfilling a philanthropic pledge he made. The international foundation set up by Gates and his wife, Melinda, has included the funding of HIV/AIDS research among its initiatives. Last year Gates came out against the "kill the gays" bill in Uganda and said homophobia fuels stigma against people with HIV. At home, Microsoft was also among the largest employers in the Pacific Northwest (including Nike and Boeing) that came out in support of Referendum 71, which established strong domestic partnerships for gay couples in Washington State.

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