Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Forbes TOP 15 Wealthiest Black Americans

15 - Kenneth I. Chenault
Net worth: $125 million
Source of wealth: American Express
Residence: New Rochelle, NY.
Age: 57
Long Island native studied history at Bowdoin College; graduated magna cum laude. Later earned a law degree at Harvard. Brief stints as a lawyer and a consultant; joined American Express in 1981 as director of strategic planning. Impressed management by turning around Amex's struggling merchandise services unit, which directly sold items to cardholders. A slew of promotions followed: president of consumer card group in 1989, president of travel related services in 1993, vice chairman of the company in 1995. Became president and chief operating officer in 1997; chief executive and chairman in 2001.

14 - Kobe Bryant
Net worth: $140 million
Source of wealth: Basketball, endorsements
Residence: Newport Beach, Calif.
Age: 30
Son of former pro basketball player Joe "Jellybean" Bryant skipped college ball; jumped straight from high school to the NBA at age 17 in 1996. Drafted by the Los Angeles Lakers; parents had to co-sign contract. Now is one of the game's premier players; 11-time All-Star and league's 2008 MVP has won three world championships with the Lakers. Endorsement deals pad earnings. Nike launched Zoom Kobe IV earlier this year; company's "lightest basketball shoe ever."

13 - Shawn "Jay-Z" Carter
Net worth: $150 million
Source of wealth: Entertainment, investments
Residence: New York City
Age: 39
Born in the Marcy Projects in Brooklyn's Bedford-Stuyvesant neighborhood; nickname "Jazzy" evolved into "Jay-Z." Began career rhyming on a street corner. Has sold more than 25 million units and won seven Grammy Awards. Biggest hits include "Guilty Until Proven Innocent," "Hard Knock Life." Tied Elvis Presley for most number one albums by solo performer with release of American Gangster in 2007.

12 - Alphonse Fletcher, Jr.
Net worth: $150 million
Source of wealth: Investments
Residence: New York City
Age: 43
Father was a technician, mother was an elementary school principal. "Buddy" majored in applied math at Harvard University, enrolled in ROTC. Sought fortune on Wall Street while serving 10-year stint in Air Force reserves. Joined financial firm Kidder, Peabody. Personally generated $25 million in profits one year; firm allegedly refused to pay promised 25% trading commission.

11 - Ulysses Bridgeman, Jr.
Net worth: $200 million
Source of wealth: Restaurants
Residence: Louisville, Ky.
Age: 55
Former shooting guard for the Milwaukee Bucks turned his athletic grit into a sprawling fast food empire. Raised in East Chicago, Ind.; father was a steelworker. "Junior" was picked in first round of the 1975 NBA draft by the Los Angeles Lakers; promptly traded to the Bucks with three others for Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. Went on to rack up 11,517 career points, franchise record for most games played. Retired 1987. Bought five Wendy's franchises to generate income while planning his next career. Today controls 161 Wendy's and 118 Chili's restaurants. Total payroll: 11,000 managers, cashiers and cooks. Sales of holding company Manna Inc. in 2008: $530 million. Sits on board of PGA. Also owns small stake in Milwaukee soda bottler Black Bear Beverages.

10 - Janice Bryant Howroyd & Family
Net worth: $250 million
Source of wealth: Staffing, investments
Residence: Palos Verdes, Calif.
Age: 56
Fourth of 11 children; father was a foreman at a dye factory, mother stayed home to raise the kids. Janice took job as an assistant at Billboard Magazine; left to start staffing firm Act-1 in 1978 with $967 in savings and $533 in loans from family. Built up client base via word of mouth, cold calls. Today the employment services agency generates annual revenues approaching $1 billion. Donated $10 million to her alma mater, North Carolina Agricultural & Technical State University, in 2004; gave another $10 million to University of Southern California in 2005.

9 - Don King
Net worth: $290 million
Source of wealth: Boxing promotion
Residence: Manalapan, Fla.
Age: 77
"Only in America." Loud-talking, flag-waving King ascended from a troubled past in Cleveland to become the biggest promoter in boxing. Accused of killing two men; 1954 case ruled a justifiable homicide, 1966 case ruled manslaughter. Spent nearly four years in prison. Entered boxing business while doing fundraising work in 1972 for a struggling Cleveland hospital. Asked Muhammad Ali to attend charity event. Later convinced Ali and George Foreman to let him promote their 1974 heavyweight championship bout. The "Rumble in the Jungle" in Zaire is remembered as one of the greatest fights of all time. Biggest success: boxing badboy Mike Tyson.

8 - Berry Gordy, Jr.
Net worth: $325 million
Source of wealth: Motown, Jobete
Residence: Los Angeles
Age: 79
Music pioneer put away his boxing gloves for songwriting at age 20. Borrowed $800 from parents to build his own record label. Created Motown Records in Detroit. Wrote hit songs ("Lonely Teardrops," "I'll be Satisfied"), managed talent (Jackson 5, The Supremes, Smokey Robinson, Lionel Richie, Stevie Wonder). Known for running Motown's record production like an assembly line, emulating Detroit's Big Three car companies; fought numerous lawsuits brought by recording artists and songwriters alleging unpaid royalties throughout career. Sold Motown Records in 1988 for $61 million; later sold Jobete Music Corp. in installments to EMI Music Publishing for more than $300 million combined. Hit movie Dreamgirls said to be loosely based on Motown; Paramount Pictures and Dreamworks issued an apology to Gordy in 2007 for any confusion the fictional story might have caused regarding Motown's legacy.

7 - Sheila Johnson
Net worth: $400 million
Source of wealth: BET, investments
Residence: The Plains, Va.
Age: 60
Doctor's daughter and violinist co-founded Black Entertainment Television with former husband Robert Johnson; couple met in college at University of Illinois. Duo sold network to Viacom for $3 billion in stock and assumed debt; split fortune in divorce in 2002 after 33-year marriage. Today she is chief executive of Salamander LLC, which controls a portfolio of luxury resorts. Through investment in Lincoln Holdings, owns stake in NHL's Washington Capitals, NBA's Washington Wizards, and WNBA's Washington Mystics. Johnson is the Mystics' president and managing partner.

6 - William Henry "Bill" Cosby, Jr.
Net worth: $450 million
Source of wealth: The Cosby Show, entertainment
Residence: Massachusetts
Age: 71
Legendary comedian born in Philadelphia. Left high school in 10th grade; finished via correspondence course while in the Navy. Broke a long-standing racial barrier when he was cast as an equal to a white actor on NBC's "I Spy" in the 1960s; role as Alexander Scott garnered him three Emmy Awards. Left TV for stand-up comedy. Returned to the small screen 1984; launched The Cosby Show on NBC, propelling the network to first place. Iconic show about an upper-middle-class black family living in New York has made him hundreds of millions in pay and syndication dollars. Best-selling book Fatherhood sold 4 million copies.

5 - Earvin "Magic" Johnson, Jr.
Net worth: $500 million
Source of wealth: Restaurants, real estate, investments
Residence: Beverly Hills, Calif.
Age: 49
Grew up in Lansing, Mich., with nine brothers and sisters. Father worked at General Motors plant; mother was school custodian. Played at Michigan State; won national championship in 1979 in one of many legendary matchups against Larry Bird. Led Los Angeles Lakers to five world championships; 13-year career in NBA included three MVP awards, 12 NBA All-Star games, a gold medal at the 1992 Barcelona Olympics and induction into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. Retired from NBA after announcing he had contracted HIV, became an entrepreneur. Introduced well-known brands to ethnically diverse neighborhoods via Magic Johnson Enterprises. Today has partnerships with Starbucks, 24 Hour Fitness, T.G.I. Fridays, AMC Theatres.

4 - Michael Jordan
Net worth: $525 million
Source of wealth: Basketball, Nike, endorsements
Residence: Chicago
Age: 46
Arguably the greatest basketball player ever. Led the NBA's Chicago Bulls to six world championships during the 1990s. Left basketball for stint as a minor league baseball player after third NBA championship in 1993; returned to the Bulls two years later. Retired again 1999; took ownership stake and executive job with the Washington Wizards. Returned to the court in 2001; signed 2-year contract with Wizards. Total points scored: 32,292, ranking him third all-time. Released Air Jordan basketball sneaker with Nike in 1984. The Jordan brand brings in hundreds of millions of dollars each year in sales for Nike; royalty checks from that provide the bulk of former star's income today. Other lucrative deals throughout career: Gatorade, Hanes, Upper Deck. Owns stake in Robert Johnson's Charlotte Bobcats; runs team's basketball operations. Son Jeffrey plays basketball at the University of Illinois, younger son Marcus recently signed letter of commitment to play for University of Central Florida next fall.

3 - Robert Johnson
Net worth: $550 million
Source of wealth: BET, investments
Residence: West Palm Beach, Fla.
Age: 63
Former billionaire's fortune has fallen from peak as recession hammered media and hotel markets. Founded cable channel Black Entertainment Television in 1979 with $15,000 of his own money and a $500,000 investment by cable king John Malone's Tele-Communications Inc. Became the first African-American billionaire in 2000 by selling BET to Viacom for $3 billion in stock and assumed debt. Former wife and BET co-founder, Sheila Johnson, took big chunk of fortune in 2002 divorce. Shares of Viacom down 50% since last May, CBS off 70%. Formed RLJ Companies: hotels, casino games, banks, NBA's Charlotte Bobcats. Pledged to raise $30 million investment fund for Liberia; opening of $8 million Kendeja Resort slated for early summer.

2 - Tiger Woods
Net worth: $600 million
Source of wealth: Golf, endorsements
Residence: Orlando, Fla.
Age: 33
Golf prodigy showed off his putting skills on The Mike Douglas Show at age 2, has dominated the links ever since. Left Stanford University after two years at age 20 in 1996 to turn pro. Has since won 66 PGA tournaments, including 14 major championships. Now hunting Jack Nicklaus' record of 18 major career wins. Named PGA Player of the Year nine times. Total career winnings: $84 million. Intensely marketable; annual on-course winnings represent less than 15% of his income. Lucrative sponsorship contracts from Nike, Gatorade, Gillette, Accenture, AT&T and others earn him at least $100 million each year. Returned to competitive golf in February after rehabbing knee injury for eight months. Dramatically won the Arnold Palmer Invitational by one shot a few weeks later. Rare comment in 1995 on his ethnic background: "The various media have portrayed me as African-American and Asian. I am both."

1 - Oprah Winfrey
Net worth: $2.7 billion
Source of wealth: Harpo Productions
Residence: Chicago
Age: 55
The Oprah brand continues to hold its value despite the recession, as viewers tune in for money-saving tips, celebrity interviews and relationship advice. Rural Mississippi native worked the television news circuit in Nashville, Tenn., and Baltimore, Md. Transformed faltering Chicago morning program into popular talk show. Launched The Oprah Winfrey Show nationally in 1986; now airs in 144 countries, brings in 44 million U.S. viewers each week. Her Harpo Productions helped create the Dr. Phil and Rachael Ray shows; Dr. Oz show due out this fall. Media matriarch planning to launch Oprah Winfrey Network early next year.

40 comments:

David Goldberg said...

Excellent solid work.
Thank you.
Thank you.

Anonymous said...

Sean Combs? Uh, not on this list? NO WAY

Philip said...

Even with pet friendly hotels, check before you book to confirm the details of their policy.

Rio Pousadas

mark said...

michael jacksons not black?

Anonymous said...

Where is Beyonce on this list? Her net worth is $300 million!!!

Anonymous said...

It's a bit disturbing that only 4 of the top 15 made their fortune outside of the entertainment industry. To really have a seat at the table, African Americans can't keep dancing for their dinner, even in that rarefied air.

Anonymous said...

Mariah Carey is around $500 million, Janet Jackson & 50 cent is n the $100 million percentile as well.

Anonymous said...

Diddy??? Beyonce???? Tyler Perry? Russell Simmons??? 50 Cent????

Anonymous said...

Damn ninjas taking way wite powwa

Anonymous said...

F**k you ninjas

Anonymous said...

Fuck you white cracker.y'all hate with y'all pale ass..tan to be close to our color.

Anonymous said...

They took our jerbbs!!!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

He was probably joking dick

Anonymous said...

Hahahahahah big huge titties

Anonymous said...

So this means if u sold them as slaves this is how much their worth. Kkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkall the way

Anonymous said...

Racist comments in 2012 come from those with rich imaginations, fantasizing about black women , nightmaring about black men, sitting at home playing on the Internet. The rest of us are reading about the net worth of these men and women. Turn off that computer and go somewhere to ponder the neglect and abuses of your childhood, and how those events sealed your current sociopathic ways. There is a better path for you.

Anonymous said...

Thank you we need to wake up and stive for a better tomorrow,

Anonymous said...

He was joking

Anonymous said...

Ok then in all their net worth is about 2,000,000,000,000 and 5 acres and a mule for each one of them?

Anonymous said...

Nice I love it

Anonymous said...

Fack u mother truck snitch dem bugs need to be put in their place go back to eating ur water melon and chicken the south will rise again

Anonymous said...

Hi,

Thank you all for viewing this page. Please stop writing inappropriate comments.

Anonymous said...

Who's this guy

Anonymous said...

Its prob some left wing Obama loving c boy

Anonymous said...

All of this is just stupid

Anonymous said...

What about Floyd mayweather Jr.?

Anonymous said...

How do I get them to gimme somarhat dollars?

Anonymous said...

U mamma stupid ninja

nateh said...

Jealousy begets bitterness.......bitterness begets death.....don't loose your life because of our success....should never have brought us here. We would be royalty worth 100 times more..


Now Beget that !!

Mr SaxMaN said...

Wheres Michael Jackson? He is worth about 1 Billion he may have passed on, but his royalties and his image and name is a brand Now!

free online casino games said...

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Anonymous said...

All DEY mens got big dongs TOOO!!!

Anonymous said...

Trigga trigga trigga gold all on my chain

Anonymous said...

I think it's time to get over the black white thing people we havr bigger things to worry about today

Anonymous said...

Yes he is.

anonymous said...

That doesn't make it okay
Who finds ignorant shit like that funny besides a racist bigot? Exactly he's a racist dickhead peckerwood honkey.

Anonymous said...

I'm white wealthy and love doing black girls I wouldn't take one out in public tho....

Jerry Tills said...

Yea and your broke ass can't really talk. Are you on the list? NOPE because you are a broke loser

Anonymous said...

goooood..... Because yah make us look bad..............

Anonymous said...

White power...hail hitler

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