Ray Kroc was the man who helped expand McDonald's into a global franchise, eventually turning it into the most successful fast food corporation. Not surprisingly, he was mentioned in Time magazine's Time 100: The Most Important People of the Century list. He was also the owner of the popular baseball team San Diego Padres.
Virgil Abloh is not just a designer but also a qualified architect. He has been a DJ, too. Apart from heading Louis Vuitton's menswear collection as its artistic director, he also became the first Black designer to lead a major fashion brand. He has also launched the luxury streetwear label Off-White.
Fashion designer and businessman Ralph Lauren is the founder of the Ralph Lauren Corporation, a global multibillion-dollar fashion enterprise. Beginning his career as a salesman for a tie company, he went on to launch his own fashion lines and established himself as a popular name in the fashion industry within years. He is known to be a generous philanthropist.
Businessman Jerry Jones is best known for being the owner of the National Football League (NFL)'s Dallas Cowboys since 1989. An alumnus of the University of Arkansas, he launched many businesses as a young man and suffered a series of failures before finally finding financial success. Besides his business ventures, he has appeared in a few TV programs.
Russell Simmons is a controversial American businessman who co-founded the hip-hop music label, 'Def Jam Recordings', and established the clothing line 'Phat Fashions'. He is noted for Harriet Tubman Sex Tape which generated a lot of heat in 2013. Simmons who calls himself a Christian yogi is accused of sexual assaults on several women. He has adopted veganism and advocates non-violence.
Automobile executive Lee Iacocca became known for developing the Ford Mustang and Pinto cars while working for the Ford Motor Company in the 1960s. In his later career, he served as the president, CEO, and chairman of Chrysler. Revered for his brilliant leadership skills, he was named the 18th-greatest American CEO of all time by Portfolio Magazine.
Netflix co-founder, CEO, and chairman Reed Hastings is also a Facebook director since 2011. He has previously served the California State Board of Education and the board of Microsoft. The Stanford alumnus is a Giving Pledge member, actively donates for children’s education and scholarships, and supports charter schools.
Linda McMahon is an American political executive and former professional wrestling executive. She is credited with co-founding Titan Sports, Inc., which is now called as WWE, Inc., along with her husband Vince McMahon. She then left WWE to focus on her political career; from 2017 to 2019, she served as the Administrator of the Small Business Administration under Trump’s presidency.
The second son of Hilton Hotels founder Conrad Hilton, Barron Hilton was initially a skilled photographer and had even learned to fly planes. A sports enthusiast, he had also been the AFL president. A philanthropist, too, he left 97% of his wealth to his own charitable foundation.
What began as amateur math tutorials for his cousin later became Sal Khan’s dream project, the online education platform Khan Academy, which now has over 42 million users worldwide. Named to Time 100 in 2012, the American-born Bengali former hedge fund analyst is an MIT and Harvard alumnus.
Alice Walton is an heiress to the fortune of the popular American multinational retail corporation, Walmart. She is currently the second richest woman in the world. She is credited with founding the now-defunct investment bank The Llama Company. She also played a key role in the establishment of the Northwest Arkansas Regional Airport by providing $15 million for its construction.
Anita Roddick was a British businesswoman and human rights activist. She was also a passionate crusader for environmental issues. She founded the British version of The Body Shop, now The Body Shop International Limited. Her company was among the first to prohibit the use of ingredients tested on animals in some products. She was also involved with Greenpeace.
Brian Moynihan is an American businessman and investment banker. He is best known as the CEO and chairman of Bank of America. In 2020, Chief Executive Magazine named him the CEO of the Year.
Maurizio Gucci was an Italian businessman. The grandson of Guccio Gucci, Maurizio served as the chairman of the Gucci group in the early-1990s. At the age of 46, Maurizio was shot dead by a hitman hired by his ex-wife Patrizia Reggiani. The murder inspired Sara Forden's book The House of Gucci, which has been adapted into a biographical crime film.
Jerry Heller was a music manager and businessman best known for his management of West Coast rap and gangsta rap pioneers N.W.A and Eazy-E. A prominent figure in the 1960s and 1970s, he played a key role in the emergence of West Coast rap music. He was a controversial figure and was accused of financial impropriety, which he denied.
Hassan Jameel is a Saudi businessman and the current Vice Chairman and Deputy President of Abdul Latif Jameel's Saudi Arabia wing. He handles the international conglomerate business' operations, such as machinery, real estate, and automotive in Saudi Arabia. Also a well-known philanthropist, Hassan Jameel works towards assisting job-seekers and promotes safety and health in Saudi Arabia.
Marvin Bush is known as the son of former US president George H.W. Bush and the brother of another former president, George W. Bush. He has also been a businessman in his own right, heading SECURACOM and HCC Insurance Holdings, and appeared in the documentary Boogie Man: The Lee Atwater Story.
Tech magnate Garrett Camp made headlines in 2020 when he quit his position of board director of Uber, a company co-founded by him, to focus on its product strategy. Camp has also formed companies such as StumbleUpon and the start-up incubator Expa Labs, and is part of The Giving Pledge.
Peter Thiel is a German-American venture capitalist and entrepreneur. As the co-founder of PayPal, Peter Thiel redefined the way online payments and online money transfers work in the United States and most Asian countries. He also played a major role in the development of Facebook as its first outside investor.
Inventor and entrepreneur George Westinghouse was mostly responsible for introducing the U.S. to alternating current (AC). Initially part of the army and the navy, the talented engineer began his journey of inventions with the rotary steam engine and went on to invent several products, such as air brakes.
Stephanie McMahon is an American businesswoman. As the chief brand officer of WWE, McMahon contributes immensely to the development of the entertainment company. Also a popular wrestling personality, she often appears on WWE's SmackDown and Raw brands. She is considered one of the most powerful women in wrestling business around the world.
Best known as the founder of the Design Museum in London, British designer and restaurateur Terence Conran had begun a furniture studio while still a student. He later launched popular interior and furniture design firms such as the Conran Design Group and Habitat. He has also penned several books.
Gottfrid Svartholm is a Swedish computer specialist best known as the ex-co-owner of the web hosting company and Internet service provider PRQ. He is also credited with co-founding The Pirate Bay along with Peter Sunde and Fredrik Neij. In 2014, Gottfrid Svartholm was imprisoned for his connection with WikiLeaks and released the following year.
Vice co-founder and CEO Shane Smith is a renowned journalist and entrepreneur whose work has taken him to remote and war-torn places such as North Korea and Liberia. Listed as one of Canada's Richest People in 2015, he is a self-made millionaire with riches such as an 8-bedroom California mansion.
Haim Saban is an Israeli-American investor, media proprietor, and film producer. He is credited with founding Saban Entertainment which produces children's television programs like Power Rangers. For his achievements in the TV industry, Saban was honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Also a philanthropist, Haim Saban donated $14 million for the completion of a children's hospital.
Celebrity chef Gregg Wallace is now better known as a MasterChef judge. Interestingly, he had begun his career as a greengrocer in Covert Garden and had then launched George Allan's Greengrocers. Wallace met his wife on Twitter, when she asked him a cooking-related question. He also owns a fitness brand.
Harry Markopolos is an American financial fraud and forensic accounting investigator. A former securities industry executive, Markopolos is best known for his investigation that exposed Bernie Madoff's Ponzi scheme much before the latter's arrest in 2008. Harry Markopolos later penned No One Would Listen as he was initially ignored by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.