NOTABLE PEOPLE OF THE USA: RAGS TO RICHES

Net Worth as of 2018:


Andrew Carnegie:
Born to a poor handloom weaver in Scotland, Andrew Carnegie worked 12 hours a day, 6 days a week, from when he was 13 years-old so he could come to America. He managed to climb the corporate ladder, and used his earnings to build the Carnegie Steel Empire.


$4.8 billion



Adebayo Ogunlesi:

He served as a law clerk to Associate Justice Thurgood Marshall of the U.S. Supreme Court. He joined the investment bank as an advisor on a Nigerian gas project. In 2002 he was appointed Global Head of CSFB's Investment Banking Divison. He currently serves as Chairman and Managing Partner.

Barbara Corcoran:

Hardworking, she had about 20 different jobs in her young adult years. She decided to start her own business and received a loan. Later on , she sold that business to make millions. Now she is known for her books and being an inspring motvational speaker. 


$80 Million

Beyonce:

Attended the High School for the Performing and Visual Arts. She was part of an all- entertainment group called Girl's Tyme with three other girls, now known as Destiny's child in 1993. Started a solo career with a bang, over 11 million copies sold worldwide. Was also named an ambassador for the 2012 World Humanitarian Day campaign. 

$355 Million

Chris Gardner:
Physically abused by his stepfather, Chris Gardner was sent to live in foster care at a young age. He struggled into adulthood as well, having to deal with homelessness while trying to raise his son as well. Despite his hardships, he went on to create a stockbrokerage firm, Gardner Rich & Co. as well as becoming a sought out inspirational speaker.



$60 million



Daymond John:
Starting off his career by simply selling hats, Daymond John was turned down by 27 banks for a business loan. Despite his financial hardships, he started hip-hop clothes brand, FUBU, and became one of the most influential motivational speakers in the US. 


$250 million

Denzel Washington:

His parents divorced at 14, he began getting involved with street violence and was sent to Oakland Military Academy.  He realized his love for the theatre after working as a creative arts director at a summer camp. He is now known as an Academy award-winning actor, director and producer. 


$290 Million


Dmitri L. Stockton:

Dmitri is a retired GE Company Senior Vice President and the former Chairman, and CEO of GE asset Management, a global asset management company with over $100 Billion in assets. He is a director of Target Corporation, Ryder Systems Inc., American Family Insurance and Board of Regents for Georgetown University.


Do Wong Chang:
Coming with his wife to the United States with nothing, Do Wong Chang worked as a janitor, gas station attendant, and at a coffee shop. He opened up his first clothing store with his wife, Forever 21, which turned into an international empire.



$3.2 billion

Frederick O. Terrell:

Frederick O. Terrell, also known as Fred, co-founded Provender Capital Group LLC, New York in 1998. Prior to Provender, he served as a Managing Director and Partner at Credit Suisse First Boston.He is a Member of the New York City Partnership and University Council of Yale University and is active in a variety of community and civic organizations. He was also a Coro Foundation Fellow in Public Affairs. 


George Soros:
Surviving Nazi occupation Hungary, George Soros made it to London to get his degree. Even after arriving to the US, he lived a modest life, only achieving his wealth when he joined a merchant bank and made his famous bet against the British pound.


$8 billion



Gwendolyn Smith Iloani:

Iloani is the chairwoman, president and CEO of Smith Whiley & Company, a private equity firm that specializes in private equity for management buyouts, recapitalizations, acquisitions and growth capital. Smith Whiley is among the largest black-owned private equity firm, and has managed in excess of $600 million.


Harold Simmons:
Coming from simple roots, Harold Simmons grew up in a shack with no indoor plumbing or electricity. His fortune started off as buying a small drugstore, but morphed into a career in investing, landing him millions of dollars. He owned six companies that trade on the NYSE.



$10 billion




Harry Wayne Huizenga:
Growing up with an abusive father, Harry Wayne Huizenga did not appear to have a prosperous future. He did, however, start the Waste Management Inc., purchased Blockbuster, and founded three Fortune 500 companies.


$2.8 billion



Henry Ford:
Starting off as a simple farm boy, Henry Ford left home at the age of 16 to take an apprenticeship as a machinist at a shipbuilding firm. Through his hard work and determination, he created the Model T car, revolutionizing the car industry and creating the Ford empire.



$1.8 billion

Howard Schultz:
Growing up in a housing complex for the poor, on as he put it "the wrong side of the tracks," Howard Schultz took over a small coffee shop, Starbucks, and turned it into a worldwide chain.


$2.6 billion


Jan Koum:
Born and raised in a small village in Ukraine, Jan Koum came to America with his mother at age 16. They lived in a government funded apartment, and he would sweep floors at local stores for money. By 19 years-old, he was an expert computer hacker, giving him the tools to create WhatsApp later in life.



$9.5 billion


Jay Z:

Raised in Brooklyn's drug-infested Marcy Projects, abandoned by his father leaving his three siblings and mother, Rap was his escape. Appeared for the first time on YO! MTV Raps in 1989. After selling millions of records, he started his own clothing line and founded an entertainment company. 

$810 Million
Jeff Bezos:
Adopted by Miguel Bezos, a Cuban immigrant, and raised in Texas. Entered Princeton University and taking summer jobs as a Programmer/Analyst in Norway and California. He joined D. E. Shaw & Co and became the youngest Vice President there. Five years later he founded Amazon, an online bookstore, that started offering CDs, Videos, and sporting goods. 



$143.1 Billion


Jennifer Lopez:

Dropped out of Baruch College, with the dreams of becoming a movie star. Since her parents did not approve, she moved out and moved alone to Manhattan. She started her career as a dancer, continued on to acting, and soon after she was introduced to the music industry.


$380 Million



Jim Carrey:
When his father lost his job, Jim Carrey had to work and go to school, resulting in him not being able to finish high school. He made something of his life however, and became one of the highest paid comedians in America.


$150 million



John Paul DeJoria:
Growing up in foster care, John Paul DeJoria started working at age 10, selling Christmas cards and newspapers to make money. Despite his troubled upbringing, he founded John Paul Mitchell Systems, as well as starting Patron Tequila.



$3.3 billion



John D. Rockefeller:
One of six children, John D. Rockefeller grew up with very little money. Against the odds, he founded the Standard Oil Company, having a near-monopoly of the oil industry in the U.S., and became the first billionaire.



$340 billion




Ken Langone:
Coming from a low-income home, Ken Langone's parents mortgaged their home to send their son to college. In college he worked as a caddy, butcher, and ditch digger to stay afloat. Later in his professional life he partnered with Bernard Marcus to start Home Depot.


$3.5 billion




Kenny Troutt:
Growing up as the son of a bartender, Kenny Tout paid his way through college by selling insurance. He later founded Excel Communications, a now defunct multi-level marketing telecommunications company.


$1.4 billion


Kevin O'Leary:
His parents inherited a business while he was sgtill young, however they divorced and his father died not to long after. His mother could not keep up with the business and he had problems in school. He became interested in business and investing and set up a mutual fund called O'Leary Funds. He is now known on a panel of judges on entrepreneurs on Shark Tank.


$400 Million


Kirk Kerkorian:
Growing up in the Great Depression, Kirk Kerkorian dropped out of the 8th grade, with no money to his name. Pushing through the hardships, he managed to earn himself the title "Father of the Mega Resort" in Las Vegas, by buying The Flamingo and building The International and MGM Grand.


$4.2 billion

Larry Ellison:
Born into poverty on the Lower East Side during World War Two, Larry Ellison contracted pneumonia and was sent to Chicago to live with his relatives at an early age. He held odd jobs for eight years to support himself, only to later found a software development company, Oracle, one of the largest tech companies in the world.


$59.5 billion



Leonardo Del Vecchio:
Sent to an orphanage at 7, Leonardo Del Vecchio apprenticed at a car and eyewear parts factory at age 14 to put himself through design school. Only 11 years later he founded the eyewear giant, Luxottica, which owns many regular glasses and sunglasses brands, including Ray-Ban and Oakley.



$23.4 billion



Lloyd Blankfein:
Selling sodas at Yankee games as a kid to make money, Lloyd Blankfein knew the meaning of working hard to get what you want. He worked his way up Wall Street, starting as a gold dealer, and ending up taking over Goldman Sachs, making it big like it is today.



$1.1 billion


Lori Greiner:

At the age of 9, her parents were separated and divorced. Since her family has a background in
business she wanted to become an entrepreneur. She best in the tv show Shark Tank. She believed that if you want to start a business, it needs to come from funding not borrowing money.


$50 Million

Mark Cuban:

At a young age, he earned some cash wokring to countless part time jobs. He was intrested in computer software and founded the consulting service called MicroSolutions. He established businesses in fields such as software, film distribution, investing in startup companies and owning the NBA basketball team.


$3.7 Billion

Mark Zuckerberg:

While attending Harvard University, he launched a new website, known as facebook, however, was sued because of stolen ideas and had to give his Facebook shares worth 300 million dollars. He quit College and was able to find someone to fund his website. He is now famous worldwide.


$77.6 Billion



Michael Bloomberg:
After losing his job at Salomon Brothers, he started in Wall Street and used his severance from Salomon Brothers to launch a startup. Also known as Bloomberg LP today.


$56 Billion

Michael Jordan:
One of five children, his father taught him to work hard and not to be tempted by street life. He took a basketball scholarship to the University of North Carolina after being on his high school basketball team. In his third year, he was selected by the Chicago Bulls in the NBA. 



$1.65 Billion

Maceo K. Ploan:

He is Chairman, President & CEO of Sloan Financial Group, Inc. and Chairman, CEO and CIO of NCM Capital Management Group, Inc. His Stated goal is to help make 12 black millionaires. His companies and other ventures operate under the umbrella of either The Sloan Financial Group or Sloan Communications, companies with assets in excess of $5 billion.

Oprah Winfrey:
Born into poverty to a single teenage mother, Oprah Winfrey ran away from home to escape the abuse she edured. She won a scholarship to college, and got her first job as a co-anchor on the local evening news at 19-years-old, becoming the first African-American TV Correspondent.




$3 billion


P.Diddy:

Born in Harlem New York, tragedy struck his family when he was still a child, his father was shot dead and raised by his single mother. He established a record label which launched the careers of many successful artists in the music industry. He is not one of the biggest names in the American music industry titled as a rapper, record producer, and entrepreneur. 




$825 Million


Ralph Lauren:
Dropping out of college to join the army, Ralph Lauren started off as a clerk at Brooks Brothers. After building himself up, he began Ralph Lauren Polo, a now well-known clothing empire.



$6.9 billion


Ray Kroc:

He was a hardworking boy, opened a music store at the age of 14, selling music sheets. He earned extra cash by doing odd jobs at grocery or drugstores and selling lemonade outside his home. He is known as an American businessman, who joined the New York Stock Exchange, who brought a revolution to the fast food industry, making McDonald's the biggest fast food chain in the world.



$1.4 Billion

Ray Whiteman:

Mr. Whiteman is a Managing Partner of Stellex. Before joining Stellax, he was a partner of The Carlyle Group and a Managing director and co-head of Carlyle Strategic Partners. He has also served several positions at both Citicorp and The Chase Manhattan Bank.

Robert Herjavec:

Unable to have family support he worked many different mininum wage jobs. He learned about a computer startup called 'Ligiquest' and became the manager. However, he started his own company, from the basement of his home, which soon became Canada's top provider of Internet Security Software. He is known as an entrpreneur of a fast-growing Secuirty software company. 


$200 Million

Robert F. Smith:

When Smith was a toddler, his mother took him to the March on Washington where Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his "I Have a Dream" speech. In High school, he applied for a summer internship at Bell Labs but was told the position was for College students.In 2000 he found his own company, Vista Equity Partners that won the Gold Medal in 2012.


Samuel Walton:
Growing up on a farm, Samuel Walton would deliver milk bottles from the family cow. He worked various jobs to pay his way through college and then joined the army. He went on to buy a simple variety store, and turned into a worldwide chain store, Walmart, as well as creating a member-only retailer warehouse, Sam's Club.


$41.4 billion


Suzanne F. Shank:

Suzanne was born in Middle Class family. She got her first job on Wall St. in 1987. She co-founded 'Siebert Cisneros Shank & Co., LLC' in 1996 and has been its President and CEO since.She now holds two of the most powerful Wall St. companies. She has been nicknamed '$ Trillion Woman'.


Sara Blakely:
Working as a struggling door-to-door fax matching saleswoman, Sara Blakely did not view herself as an entreprenuer. With just one idea, however, she founded Spanx, shapewear for women.



$1.1 billion


Shahid Khan:
Coming to America from Pakistan at 16, Shahid Khan had just the clothes on his back to start his new life with. He worked as a dishwasher to pay his way through college, and later went on to become one of the most successful and richest businessmen. He owns Flex-N-Gate, NFL team Jacksonville Jaguars, and much more.


$7.1 billion


Sheldon Adelson:
Growing up sleeping on the floor of a tenement house, Sheldon Adelson sold newpapers at age 12 to start making money. His drive and ambition led him to running the largest casino in the world, Las Vegas Sands.


$41.5 billion



Steve Jobs:
Struggling with formal education, Steve Jobs dropped out of college. He went on to be the co-founder of Apple Computers, and a leading exponent of the personal computer revolution.

                                                 

                                                    $10.2 billion



Thurman V. White Jr.:

Thurman is a CEO of Progress Investment Management Company LLC which is an indpendent, employee owned investment advisor with $7 billion in assets under management.Prior to becoming CEO in 2004, he served as Progress' managing director.


Ursula Burns:
Growing up in the projects, Ursula Burns was raised by a single mother. She managed to turn Xerox into a viable and profitable business, becoming the first African-American woman to lead a Fortune 500 company, along with many other business ventures.


$28.7 million



Valerie Mosley:

Mosley has served in many organizations as an advisor, director, and board member, among other leadership positions. During President Obama's time in office, she served on the President's Board of Advisors on Historically Black Colleges and Universities.


Walt Disney:
Coming from a simple home, Walt Disney would draw pictures for his neighbors to make money. He went on to co-found Walt Disney Productions with his brother, which became one of the best-known motion-picture production companies in the world.


$1 billion


Warren Buffett:

Making money was an early interest for Buffett, who sold soft drinks and had a paper route. At the age of 14, he invested the earnings in 40 acres of land, which he then rented for a profit. He runs Berkshire Hathaway, which owns more than 60 comapnies.


$86.1 billion

Will Smith:
Born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, his neighborhood was a melting pot of cultures where orthodox Jews co-existed with a large Muslim population, which was against his family' faith. He turned down a scholarship to MIT and started a rapping career. Soon started acting and is now a popular American actor.


$250 Million


Zdenka Bakala:
Having fled Communist Czechoslovakia at 19, Zdenka Bakala arrived at Lake Tahow with just $50 to his name. He put himself through college by washing dishes at a nearby casino, allowing him entrance into the business world and to create Credit Suisse.



$1.9 billion

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