Meet Our Founder, Barbara Streisand

Barbra Streisand

Barbra Streisand, Co-Founder

Barbra Streisand is the best-selling female recording artist in history – and the only artist to ever receive an Oscar, Tony, Emmy, Grammy, Directors Guild of America, Golden Globe, National Medal of Arts and Peabody Award, as well as France’s Légion d’Honneur, the American Film Institute’s Lifetime Achievement Award and the Presidential Medal of Freedom. And in 2008, she became the only female director to receive The Kennedy Center Honors. Ms. Streisand is the only recording artist in history to achieve a number one album in six consecutive decades.

A true Renaissance woman, Ms. Streisand’s civil rights activism and philanthropic pursuits are equally as impressive. As a lifelong, passionate philanthropist and political activist, she has given and raised millions of dollars to combat some of the most pressing social and political issues of our time in both the U.S. and around the world. A champion for the most vulnerable with a sense of responsibility to heal the world that grows out of her Jewish heritage, Ms. Streisand and her Foundation have tackled a wide variety of issues, including women’s health and women’s equality, civil rights and voting rights, educational opportunity, and the preservation of the planet by working to combat the potential catastrophic effects of climate change.

Making the movie Yentl early in her career ignited Ms. Streisand’s passion for ensuring that women get the same chances in life as men. And more recently, upon learning that women’s heart disease is often symptomatically and physiologically different from men’s heart disease, yet has been historically under-researched, under-funded and under-diagnosed, Ms. Streisand is again using her voice to bring about change.

In 2008, she gave millions of dollars to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center for the Barbra Streisand Women’s Cardiovascular Research and Education Program and in 2012 she founded the Barbra Streisand Women’s Heart Center at Cedars-Sinai Heart Institute, for which she donated and raised millions of additional dollars. In 2014, Ms. Streisand along with Ronald O. Perelman co-founded the Women’s Heart Alliance (WHA) to raise awareness, encourage action and drive new research to fight women’s heart disease, with a goal of dramatically reducing cardiovascular-related illness and death among women. WHA is the only heart-related organization that looks at the impact of heart disease and stroke on women exclusively. No stranger to Washington, Ms. Streisand has met with senior leaders in Congress and the Executive branch to advocate for equitable representation in medical research to further study the unique impact of heart disease on women.

Read Ms. Streisand’s op-ed, “The battle for women’s hearts — and lives,” in The Washington Post.