A billion dollars may seem like an unbelievable amount of wealth for a single person, yet nearly every state in the nation has an individual worth at least that much.
Wealth-X compiled a list of the richest person in each state and found that in only nine states — Utah, New Mexico, Mississippi, Maine, Delaware, Hawaii, South Dakota, Alaska and Wyoming — the wealthiest individual has a net worth of under $1 billion.
The richest person in the country is Microsoft cofounder Bill Gates and his estimated net worth of $81.5 billion also makes him the richest person in Washington state. He’s followed by Warren Buffett, the second-richest person in the country and the wealthiest in Nebraska, with a net worth of $66.9 billion.
The American dream bears fruit
Following the American tradition, 35 of the 50 richest individuals are self-made. Many of those who inherited a fortune went on to vastly improve their wealth, including businessmen such as Florida’s Micky Arison. The son of Carnival Corp. cofounder Ted Arison, he has since grown the cruise line into the world’s largest and amassed a fortune of $6.5 billion.
The majority of the rich on the list are men: just six women made the cut. Topping the list for women is the richest person in Arkansas, Christy Walton, who is also the richest woman in the world. She is the widow of one of the sons of Walmart founder Sam Walton and has an estimated net worth of $37.9 billion.
Check out the chart below to see who the richest person is in your state.
Wealthiest individual in each state
|Name||State||Estimated net worth (U.S. $ billion)|
|Michael R. Bloomberg||New York||33.7|
|Forrest Mars, Jr.||Virginia||25.9|
|Anne Cox Chambers||Georgia||12.1|
|James Goodnight||North Carolina||11.1|
|Richard Cohen||New Hampshire||10.1|
|David Tepper||New Jersey||10.0|
|John Menard, Jr.||Wisconsin||9.2|
|Jack C. Taylor||Missouri||7.4|
|Kenneth C. Griffin||Illinois||5.3|
|Bruce Halle, Sr.||Arizona||4.7|
|Thomas Frist, Jr.||Tennessee||4.3|
|Anita Zucker||South Carolina||2.7|
|Brad M. Kelley||Kentucky||2.0|
|John S. Middleton||Pennsylvania||1.8|
|Jonathan Nelson||Rhode Island||1.6|
|James C. Justice II||West Virginia||1.6|
|Gary Tharaldson||North Dakota||1.0|
|Jon M. Huntsman, Sr.||Utah||0.95|
|Mack C. Chase||New Mexico||0.91|
|David H. Nutt||Mississippi||0.88|
|T. Denny Sanford||South Dakota||0.58|
5 families who suffered a reversal of fortune
Just because you amass a fortune, doesn’t mean you can hold onto it. It may be bad timing in a risky real-estate market or a slow dissipation of wealth over multiple generations, but the result for these five rich families is the same: a reversal of fortune.
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