A US-based technology billionaire has quit the The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and donated $600,000 to an LGBTQ-rights group in a public repudiation of the Mormon faith, according to reports.
Jeff T Green’s donation to Equality Utah is the start of his pledge to donate 90 per cent of his personal wealth, estimated to be worth $5bn (£3.77bn), the Salt Lake Tribune reported.
Green is the chief executive officer of Trade Desk, an advertising-technology firm that he founded in 2009.
“While most members are good people trying to do right, I believe the church is actively and currently doing harm in the world,” Green wrote in a letter to Russell M Nelson, president of the Mormon church.
“I believe the Mormon church has hindered global progress in women’s rights, civil rights and racial equality, and LGBTQ+ rights.”
In the resignation letter, which 11 family members and a friend added their names to, Green said that while he had not been an active member of the faith for over 10 years, he wanted to leave the church officially and have his name stricken from membership records.
The church did not immediately return a request from the Associated Press seeking comment on Tuesday, but in recent years has shown a willingness to engage on LGBTQ rights that is unusual for a conservative faith.
While the church has maintained doctrinal opposition to same-sex marriage and intimacy, last month its leader Dallin H Oaks called for recognition of both religious and LGBTQ rights.