The land of free-market capitalism is also home to the highest-ranking billionaires in the world. Jeff Bezos is the wealthiest in any state or nation, he is the richest person in the world. All told, the U.S. is a haven to so many billionaires and multi-millionaires that we have categorized the super affluent, state-by-state, to get an in-depth look at America’s wealth.
Alice Walton is another heir of Sam Walton, founder of the Walmart superstore chain. She has a net worth of $66.9 billion. Walton is the only daughter of Walton but is one of three siblings.
She has an interest in art and opened Crystal Bridges of American Art in her birth town of Newport, Arkansas. It is a museum of modern art featuring famous works from Andy Warhol, Mark Rothko, and Norman Rockwell.
Susan Alfond inherited her wealth from her father’s business. She has a net worth of $2.6 billion. Harold Alfond established the Dexter Shoe Company after buying an old mill in Maine and converting it into shoemaking.
Susan Alfond shares the fortune with one remaining sibling. The siblings cashed out in 1993 by selling the company to Berkshire Hathaway for $420 million in stock. Alfond’s shares are worth billions in today’s market.
Daniel Gilbert made a fortune with Quicken Loans. He founded the massive mortgage lender in 1985 when he was 22. It became the largest mortgage lender in the U.S.
Gilbert has made real estate investments in downtown Detroit, purchasing and upgrading old properties with a plan to create 24,000 jobs. He owns the pro basketball team, the Cleveland Cavaliers, and he has plans to bring a professional soccer team to Detroit.
Mack C. Chase
In New Mexico, Mack Chase is the wealthiest resident with $700 million in net worth. The oil and gas tycoon hit black gold in the Permian Basin oilfields of Texas and New Mexico. Chase first began working on wells with his father and brother and then went off on his own in 1968.
In 1979, The self-made oilman partnered with John Grey and founded Marbob Energy with a pumping service company in southeast New Mexico. Chase split with Gray and branched out into Mack Energy Corp., a new firm.
Hedge fund manager John Overdeck is also co-founder and co-chairman of a New York City firm, Two Sigma Investments, that manages $66 billion. It is a data-driven hedge fund that uses algorithms and lots of data to price securities. At age 16, Overdeck was a math whiz who won the International Mathematical Olympiad.
In 2019, Forbes named him one of the wealthiest hedge fund managers. With a net worth of $6.5 billion, Overdeck is New Jersey’s top dog. He supports many charitable causes and has donated $195 million to his philanthropic foundation.
Jacqueline Mars owns one-third of the Mars candy empire founded by her grandfather. She worked for the world’s largest candy maker for 20 years and served on the board until 2006.
She is known for her philanthropy and sits on the Smithsonian and the National Archives boards. During the 2020 pandemic, Mars’ net worth went up over 26% to $31.3 billion.
Frank VanderSloot is a businessman of many trades. He is the richest person in Idaho with a net worth of $2.7 billion. He is the founder and C.E.O. of wellness and nutrition company Melaleuca, Inc., but he has an array of financial interests.
VanderSloot’s entrepreneurial efforts include ranching, owning the Riverbend Communications radio network, and political financing. In government, VanderSloot’s political contributions paid off with an appointment to the board of directors on the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. He owns Riverbend Ranch, one of the nation’s largest cattle operations.
The wealthiest man in Iowa is Harry Stine. He is a seed manufacturer who operates an agricultural business specializing in corn and soybean seed licensing to large multinational agricultural corporations like Monsanto and Syngenta.
Stine took to farming and developed an interest in seeds as a 5-year-old growing up on an Iowa farm. With a touch of autism, Stine is a master data and number cruncher and has created seed genetics firm Stine Seed and built himself a net worth of $5.5 billion.
With 188 billionaires residing in California in 2021, the Golden State is easily the nation’s top destination of America’s wealthiest. Mark Zuckerberg stands at the top of this list. The Silicon Valley Facebook co-founder earns $6 to $12 million per day.
By year’s end, he takes in about $3 billion. Zuckerberg founded the social media behemoth in 2004 as a college student. He has a net worth of $96.9 billion. Zuckerberg signed the “The Giving Pledge,” an effort sponsored by Bill and Melinda Gates that encourages billionaires to give the bulk of their wealth to charity.
John Menard, Jr.
With a net worth of $14 billion, John Menard, Jr. has come a long way since starting a construction business in 1958. He opened a chain of home improvement stores in the Midwest called Menards. It has grown to 300 stores and $10.7 billion in sales.
Menard’s home improvement stores opened 20 years before Home Depot. The billionaire is an Indy 500 sponsor and his car won in 2019. His son is a former NASCAR racer.
Warren Buffet is the 7th wealthiest person in the world. The Berkshire Hathaway C.E.O. has a net worth of $109.4 billion, making him Nebraska’s clear winner in wealth. He got his start running a hedge fund. Once he made his first million, he went into bank ownership.
Today, Berkshire Hathaway owns Geico, Duracell, Dairy Queen, and about 60 other companies. Known as the frugal billionaire, he is one of the world’s most profitable investors. He resides in his original 1958 home purchased for $31,500. Buffett joined the Gates foundation’s giving pledge and has promised to donate 99% of his wealth.
Businessman Philip Anschutz is worth $10.1 billion. He has generated his wealth from a wide range of industries over five decades. In entertainment, he owns Anschutz Entertainment Group with 100 venues worldwide.
In sports, he owns the N.H.L.’s Los Angeles Kings and a third of the L.A. Lakers. A 300,000-acre windmill farm in Wyoming is also under his umbrella of assets. Besides entertainment and energy, Anschutz also built his fortune in telecom, railroads, oil, and real estate.
The richest person in Nevada was Sheldon Adelson, the casino tycoon until he died on January 11, 2021. Now the wealthiest person in Nevada is his wife and heir, Miriam Adelson.
They have four children and 11 grandchildren. Adelson made his money running half of the Sands Hotel & Casino gambling empire with casinos in Vegas, Singapore, and Macao, China. He was C.E.O. of the $14 billion in sales gambling behemoth. She has a net worth of $38.2 billion.
Billionaire Glen Taylor made his fortune by acquiring a wedding services business in 1975 and turning it into a $2 billion annual sales printing firm. He served as C.E.O. of Taylor Corp. until 2015 but remains chairman of the board.
Taylor owns farmland in Minnesota and Iowa. He also owns a stake in the N.B.A.’s Timberwolves. In 2014, he purchased the Minneapolis Star Tribune. His net worth is $2.9 billion.
The richest man in Connecticut is Ray Dalio. Worth $20.3 billion, Dalio made his fortune founding Bridgewater Associates, the biggest hedge fund company in the nation. The fund manages $150 billion in assets.
He started Bridgewater from his N.Y.C. apartment as a recent graduate from Harvard Business School. Dalio has contributed hundreds of millions of dollars to charity. His personal philanthropic foundation supports inner-city education.
Phil Knight is the co-founder and former C.E.O. of the world’s most famous footwear brand. In 1964, he invested $500 into the tennis shoe company.
Today, Nike brings in over $37 billion annually. He created Nike with his college track coach, Bill Bowerman, at the University of Oregon. Knight is a generous philanthropist and has donated about $2 billion. Knight is worth about $49.7 billion.
As the third heir of the Mars candy empire, John Mars has a $31.8 billion net worth. He, like his siblings, inherited Mars, Inc. when their father died in 1999. At that time, John Mars was bequeathed $24 billion.
The company started in 1911 when the founder of Mars, Inc. Frank Mars began making hand-dipped chocolate. The company makes Mars Bar, Twix, 3 Musketeers, and M&Ms. Each day, 400 million M&Ms candies are produced in the U.S.
Out of New York state’s 118 billionaires, Michael Bloomberg is the wealthiest. Bloomberg has a net worth of $59 billion. He struck it rich co-founding Bloomberg LP, a financial information and media company, in 1981. He owns 88% of the $10 billion company.
He was a presidential candidate in 2019. Bloomberg served as the mayor of N.Y.C. for 12 years. His philanthropic work has contributed more than $5 billion to various causes.
Jimmy Rane made his fortune in the lumber industry. He is C.E.O. of Alabama’s Great Southern Wood Preserving, a company he founded in 1970. He is widely known as The Yella Fella, a cowboy persona he developed for marketing.
As one of the nation’s biggest lumber companies, Rane holds about $950 million in net worth, just shy of the billionaire category.
Les Wexner is the founder of L Brands, a once-trendy conglomerate of global fashion brands like Bath & Body Works, Victoria's Secret, and Abercrombie & Fitch. He launched his women’s clothing empire with The Limited and then purchased the remaining companies.
He acquired Victoria's Secret as a floundering San Francisco lingerie shop for $1 million. Ten years later it was worth $1 billion. In 2020, responding to a downturn in the popularity of his brands, Wexner stepped down from his five-decade position as C.E.O. and sold Victoria's Secret to a private equity firm. He retains a $6.6 billion net worth.
Thomas First, Jr.
Thomas First, Jr. is easily the wealthiest person in Tennessee with a net worth of $17.6 billion. In 1968, he co-founded Hospital Corp. of America with his father.
The former Air Force flight surgeon took the company public in 2011 and it became HCA Healthcare, a massive healthcare company with 185 hospitals and 1,800 patient care offices. It operates in 21 U.S. states and in London.
Jonathan Nelson served as C.E.O. of Providence Equity Partners until January 2021 and is currently executive chairman of the firm. Since founding the company in 1989, Nelson led investments into at least 160 companies. Primarily, businesses in media, communications, education, and informational industries.
The equity firm cashed in $1.3 billion by selling its stake in an automotive software company called OEConnection, tripling its original 2016 investment. Nelson holds a $2.1 billion net worth.
Dennis Washington has a net worth of $6.1 billion. He owns the majority interest in The Washington Companies, a diversified business group with a large stake in mining.
Washington Companies owns a stake in two diamond mines, a copper mine, and a regional railroad. Washington, himself, is also invested in Seaspan Corp., a container ship company co-founded by his son Kyle, that operates more than 110 container ships.
John Abele is the director and co-founder of Boston Scientific. He is Vermont’s wealthiest citizen with $640 million in net worth. Abele took his medical device company public in 1992 and by 1996 he made the Forbes 400 list as a billionaire.
His company developed devices to provide less invasive treatments for patients. It has $9.8 billion in sales, but Abele now owns only a small stake. John is also a philanthropist and has donated much of his fortune to causes.
Medical device manufacturer Carl Cook inherited Cook Group from his parents who launched the medical supplies company in 1963. It specializes in devices for minor surgeries like stents and filters.
Carl Cook is president of Cook MyoSite, a life sciences division that is developing cell therapy treatment for incontinence. He has a $9.6 billion net worth. In 2017, the company cashed out and sold subsidiary Cook Pharmica for $950 million.
Anita Zucker has a net worth of $1.9 billion making her South Carolina’s richest. Her late husband, Jerry Zucker, an immigrant from Israel, was an inventor who founded InterTech Group, a privately-owned chemicals manufacturer.
It has $3 billion in revenue. Additionally, an aerospace engineering firm and a large commercial real estate firm are under the InterTech umbrella. Anita Zucker is C.E.O. of the enterprise. She is also known for her philanthropy.
Pauline MacMillan Keinath
Pauline MacMillan Keinath is the largest shareholder of the world’s largest food company. Cargill is a food, agriculture, financial, and industrial enterprise that started as a single grain warehouse at an Iowa railroad stop in 1865.
Pauline MacMillan Keinath’s great-grandfather, W. W. Cargill founded Cargill and it is the biggest private company in the U.S. She is believed to hold the largest share, approximately 13%. The billionaire heiress has been the richest person in Missouri for many years. She has a net worth of $6.4 billion.
T. Denny Sanford
Denny Sanford is the founder and owner of First Premier Bank, a company that specializes in providing high-interest rate credit cards to high-risk applicants. First Premier Bank has only 17 branches, yet it is one of Mastercard’s top vendors.
Sanford is South Dakota’s richest person with $2.8 billion. He is known for saying that he wants to give all his money away and die broke. He has given $1.6 billion away so far.
Self-made billionaire Harold Hamm went from rags to riches as the son of Oklahoma sharecroppers picking cotton, to becoming an oil tycoon with $9.3 billion in net worth. He drilled his first well in 1971. He was C.E.O. of Continental Resources until 2019 and currently serves as executive chairman.
Hamm is the father of fracking, a controversial oil drilling method that uses horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing. Tapping into oil by fracking led to the U.S.’s global dominance in oil production.
C.E.O. and founder of Interactive Brokers in Palm Beach, Florida, Thomas Peterffy is a landowner and electronic brokerage operator. The self-made billionaire started with nothing when he emigrated to the U.S. from communist-run Hungary in 1965.
As a self-taught programmer, he developed one of the earliest electronic trading systems. By 1997, he bought a seat at the N.Y.S.E. He owns 500,000 acres of timber property in Florida, the largest holding of anyone east of the Mississippi River. He has a net worth of $18.8 billion.
As chairman of Cox Enterprises, James Cox Kennedy is invested in communications and media. The company provides broadband digital services, telephone, home security, and automotive services.
His grandfather, James M. Cox, founded the media company in 1898 after purchasing the Dayton Evening News. Today it’s worth $9.2 billion. Kennedy is a prominent philanthropist who gives to a wide range of charities.
Koch Industries is a family venture founded in 1940 by Charles Koch’s father, Fred Koch. He developed a successful refining method for turning heavy crude into gasoline. Charles Koch is C.E.O. and chairman of Koch Industries with a net worth of $46.7 billion.
Today, the company has its hand in a wide range of industries and manufacturing. It produces brands like Stainmaster carpet, Dixie Cup and Quilted Northern Tissue. Koch Industries makes fertilizers, offers commodity trading, mines minerals, makes pollution control equipment, and runs ranches. As a politically active libertarian, Koch donated $2.8 million to GOP PACs in 2020.
Abigail Johnson is one of the world’s richest women with a $21.4 billion net worth. She is C.E.O. of Fidelity Investments with a 24.5% share in the mutual fund company. The Boston-based finance company was founded by Johnson’s grandfather, Edward Johnson, II.
It manages $3.8 trillion in assets. Johnson earned an M.B.A. at Harvard in 1998 and then became an analyst at Fidelity. She has been chairman since 2016 after taking over for her father.
Tamara Gustavson is worth $6.5 billion. As the richest person in Kentucky, she acquired most of her wealth by inheriting a stake in her father’s self-storage company. She holds an 11% share of Public Storage, the company B. Wayne Hughes co-founded in 1972.
She is also on the board of his company American Homes 4 Rent. Gustavson lives on a lavish Kentucky farm called Spendthrift, where she breeds racehorses.
James Goodnight got into the software industry early. In 1976, he and North Carolina State University colleague John Sall co-founded SAS, a $3.1 billion analytics software company.
Goodnight has served as C.E.O. of SAS since its inception. It is one of the world’s leading business analytics software firms. Goodnight is the richest person in North Carolina with $6.5 billion.
Candy bar heiress Victoria Mars has a $7.9 billion net worth. She is heir to Mars, Inc., a candy and pet food company. Her great-grandfather was Frank Mars, who founded the company back in 1911. It makes M&Ms, Skittles, Milky Way, Pedigree, and Whiskas brands.
The company also makes Ben’s Original rice. Mars, Inc. brings in $40 billion annually. Victoria Mars and her siblings inherited an 8% stake after her brother, Forrest Mars, Jr., died in 2016.
Jim Walton is easily Arkansas’ richest person with a net worth of $65 billion. Walton is super-wealthy because he is the youngest son and heir to big box store Walmart founder Sam Walton.
Additionally, he is C.E.O. and chairman of Arvest Bank, the family’s financial institution holding $20 billion. He and his heirs own half of Walmart.
Jim Justice, II
Jim Justice, II was West Virginia’s only billionaire when he was elected governor in 2016. Now, according to Forbes, he is a multimillionaire with a net worth of $451.4 million. Justice inherited his fortune from his father’s coal business. He owns coal mines in five states.
Beginning in 2016, however, his net worth began to shrink substantially due to court orders and tax-related liens adding up to over $23 million. His company faces about $300 million in reclamation claims.
Pierre Omidyar is the founder of several companies, including eBay. Born in Paris and raised in the U.S., Omidyar studied at Tufts and Berkeley. At eBay, he developed the original computer code to allow direct person-to-person transactions.
He created the auction-friendly software when he was 28. Omidyar was chairman of eBay from 1998 to 2015. Through the company, he also owns 6% of PayPal. He is a technology entrepreneur and a software engineer. Recently, he is in the news media business with First Look Media. Omidyar is worth $22.4 billion, making him the 24th-richest person in the world.
The richest person in North Dakota is Gary Tharaldson. He is also the state’s first billionaire with a $1 billion net worth. Tharaldson made his money in the hotel industry by buying up properties.
The self-made businessman was a high school P.E. teacher when he first began buying hotels. A Super 8 motel in North Dakota was Tharaldson’s first purchase. He acquired 350 hotel properties. He sold 130 of them to Goldman Sachs for $1.2 billion in 2006.
Andrea Reimann-Ciardelli is New Hampshire’s richest resident. She doesn’t quite break the billion-dollar mark, but she does have a $720 million fortune. The German-born American is heiress to German chemist Ludwig Reimann and JAB Holding Company.
She sold her 11.1% stake in German conglomerate company JAB in 2003 for $1 billion to other family members. The conglomerate owns international brands in beauty, home products, and hygiene.
While he isn't the absolute richest guy in Mississippi, (that title goes to James and Thomas Duff) David Rich's definitely had to go into our list simply because of his name. This American billionaire is now worth $1.5 billion.
He was born into good fortune (and a name that left him no other choice) brought on by his father, Robert, who built a packaged food empire, mostly centering around non-dairy foods and desserts. No doubt, the rise in veganism in recent years has only contributed to his immense wealth.
Gayle Benson has a $3.4 billion net worth. She is a businesswoman and sports franchise owner. Benson is the only woman who is a majority shareholder in both the N.F.L. and the N.B.A. She is the owner of the New Orleans Saints and the New Orleans Pelicans.
She won a full stake in the franchises after the death of her husband Tom Benson. Benson is a practicing Catholic and was awarded the Pro Ecclesia et Pontifice by Pope Benedict XVI in 2012. She founded a thoroughbred racehorse company in 2014.
Gail Miller and her late husband Larry Miller built a car dealership empire out of a single Toyota dealership. Now the Larry H. Miller Management Corporation operates 64 dealerships with an estimated $5.4 billion in sales.
The couple bought the Utah Jazz in 1986 for $22 million. The family sold it in 2020 for $1.66 billion, a considerable profit. Gail serves as chairman of the board.
Leonard Hyde and Jonathan Rubini
Leonard Hyde and Jonathan Rubini are joint owners of the commercial real estate development company J.L. Properties. The immense commercial development venture encompasses half of the development properties in Anchorage, Alaska, the state’s largest city.
They own the ConocoPhillips Towers and the J.L. Tower. The real estate mavens amassed their fortune by buying up property during economic downturns. Together, they hold $600 million.
Robert Gore and Elizabeth Snyder
This brother and sister team runs W.L. Gore & Associates. It originated as a family-run business founded in Newark, Delaware, by the sibling’s parents, Wilbert and Genevieve Gore, in 1958.
Profits went through the roof after Robert Gore, who studied as a chemical engineer, went on to invent the outdoors wear miracle fabric known as “Gore-Tex.” It is lightweight and waterproof. The company generates $3.2 billion annually in sales.
Ernest Garcia, II
Ernest Garcia, II owns DriveTime Automotive and is the top shareholder of Carvana, an online car buying and financing platform. This automotive entrepreneur has accumulated a $5.6 billion net worth.
His son, Ernest Garcia, III founded Carvana as a subsidiary of DriveTime Automotive, a company that was offered as an IPO in 2017. DriveTime is the fourth-largest used car retailer in the nation.
Ken Griffin is the founder and C.E.O. of Citadel. The company is a Chicago-based hedge fund worth approximately $34 billion in assets. Griffin launched Citadel from his Harvard dorm in 1987.
He is also the main founder behind the big conglomerate, Citadel Securities, which is one of Wall Street’s biggest trading companies involved in one out of the top five stock trades in the U.S. With a net worth of $16.1 billion, Griffin is easily the richest person in Illinois. The wealthy financier has donated over $1 billion to charity.
Jeff Bezos is the richest person of any state, but he happens to reside in Washington. He’s also one of the richest people in the world; even after transferring a quarter of his wealth to his ex-wife following their divorce. Today, he holds a whopping $188.9 billion. He is the mastermind behind Amazon, the online bookstore he put together from scratch out of the garage of his Seattle home in 1994.
The enormous company brought in a mind-boggling $386.1 billion in a single year in 2019. Jeff also owns The Washington Post and Blue Origin, an aerospace company. He recently announced he will step down as C.E.O. of Amazon to focus on those other companies.
Ted Lerner is a real estate tycoon. He owns Lerner Enterprises, one of the largest real estate companies in the Washington D.C. area. Lerner started his business with a $250 loan from his wife in 1952. He was 26, he then became a builder.
In 2006, Lerner purchased the Washington Nationals M.L.B. team. In 2018 his son Mark took over the franchise.