American Dynasties: These Are The Richest Families In America
America has long since held a reputation of land to go to if you dream big and want to achieve massive success. It’s interesting how America is so powerful and fruitful considering just how young the country is. Still, one is for sure, the Land of the Free has helped many achieve their dreams and go beyond financial success. America will forever be the country of young up-and-coming entrepreneurs, but at the same time is home to some very wealthy dynasties that have been around for decades.
Jeff Bezos may be one of the richest people ever, thanks to Amazon, but there are families over there that have been making millions and billions for a long time. Some families are out there in the open, while others prefer to stay out of the limelight and just run their billions of worth of corporations. They may love or not people knowing how much money they have, but they cannot escape their popularity, nor their bank accounts. Here are some of the most influential families in the world, and some of the richest families across the States.
25. The Spielberg Family
Net Worth: $3.7B*
Family Business: Amblin, DreamWorks
Prominent Member: Steven Spielberg
Steven Spielberg is the highest-grossing director of all time, responsible for many hits including Indiana Jones and Schindler’s List. Steven, his wife (former actress Kate Capshaw), and his big family are worth around $3.7 billion.
Steven and Kate have many children and grandchildren, and this sum will keep them well-secured once they are all gone. Steven is focused on making movies, but his income comes from many real estate investments as well. When not filming, he is making money as a producer. After all, he owns the DreamWorks studio that launched huge hits like Transformers and Shrek. Today, DreamWorks is one of the most premium Disney rivals.
24. The Kraft Family
Net worth: $6.6B*
Family Business: Kraft Group, New England Patriots
Prominent Member: Robert Kraft
Industry: Holdings, Sports
As a New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft is officially one of the richest sports owners ever. As a result, his entire family is rich. Roberts started his path as an entrepreneur at his father-in-law’s company. From there he moved to a career in paper products, and eventually a popular International Forest Products company, where some of the clients were Kodak and Avon.
With so big clients, wealth can be accumulated faster. At one moment, Robert started buying up sports teams, including soccer teams and even an e-sport team. His crown jewel is without doubt his ownership of the New England Patriots.
23. The Getty Family
Net Worth: $5B*
Family Business: Getty Oil
Prominent Member: August Getty
The Getty family acclimated its money thanks to the petroleum industry. The patriarchs are George Franklin and his son, Jean-Paul, with a family originally coming to America from Ireland.
George Franklin was a lawyer-turned-oilman. After making it big in the oil industry, George passed along the company’s proceeds to his sons, and it paid off big time. With each generation, the wealth of this family only grew. Like any good dynasty, they expanded into other industries and sectors as well, like Getty Realty.
22. The Powell-Jobs Family
Net Worth: $10.2B*
Family Business: Apple, Inc.
Prominent Member: Steve Jobs
Steve Jobs was the legendary CEO of Apple, Inc. who literally changed the way we use technology today. He was married to Lauren Powell until his death. Together with Steve Wozniak, Steve started Apple in 1976. At the time they had a small goal: to create and sell a revolutionary personal computer.
That small goal was a modest success compared to what came next and what Apple eventually has become. Today, Apple is a massive conglomerate, and as a result, the Powell-Jobs family became super-rich. Sadly, Steve was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in 2003 and eight years later he passed away. He left a huge legacy and a fortune of over $10.2 billion.
21. The Riney Family
Net worth: $3.5B*
Family Business: Scottrade
Prominent Member: Rodger Riney
The Riney family is responsible for running the Scottrade empire. The company was originally developed by Rodger O. Riney who was born in the 1940s. His grandparents gave him ten shares of stock and it introduced him to the stock market as a child. Riney made his move in the 1970s when he founded Scottsdale Securities and provided trades at a lower-commission.
A decade later he opened another branch in St. Louis. In 1996 the company started its own internet trading platform. Scottsdale was renamed Scottrade after it was bought by Charles Schwab’s TD Ameritrade in 2017. Riney is still the CEO of the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation and shows no signs of slowing down.
20. The Butt Family
Net Worth: $11B*
Family Business: H.E. Butt
Prominent Member: Charles Butt
Texas-based, the Butt family owned a very popular grocery store chain H.E.B. Grocery. The business actually kicked off by some tragic circumstances. This is living proof that silver lining does exist.
Florence Butt, the original founder, opened the store in hopes of offsetting the costs for her husband’s tuberculosis diagnosis. The company immediately took off to their surprise. Florence’s son, Howard Butt, continued to grow the company throughout Texas, and the rest is history. Charles Butt is CEO of the company since 1971 and owns $22 billion, including 340 Texan stores and 54 Mexican locations.
19. The Lauder Family
Net Worth: $24.3B*
Family Business: Estée Lauder
Prominent Member: Leonard Lauder
You have probably heard about Estée Lauder, the beauty company? That’s how the Lauder family got their wealth. Shortly after World War II, the Lauder family started working on their wealth. Actually, husband-wife founders Estée and Joseph Lauder started working on it.
At first, they were operating only in the New York area and had only four basic products: cleansing oil, a crème pack, all-purpose crème, and skin lotion. These products were a real hit and in the next two years, they opened their first department store on Saks Fifth Avenue, bringing Estee Lauder to a much bigger market. In the 1990s, they began topping international sales.
18. The Ziff Family
Net Worth: $14.4B*
Family Business: Ziff Davis, Inc.
Industry: Investing, Publishing
Prominent Member: Dirk Ziff
A few years ago, the powerful Ziff family closed their hudge funds, and that really doesn’t matter a lot. Their company, the Ziff Brothers Investments will forever be remembered for its massive impact on Wall Street.
Brothers eventually went separate ways to build their own businesses, while the company itself remains infallible. The family’s fortune goes back nearly a century, back to William Ziff Sr.’s publishing company.
17. The Wynn Family
Net Worth: $3.4B*
Family Business: Wynn Resorts
Prominent Member: Steve Wynn
Steve Wynn started building his wealth in Las Vegas. He is personally responsible for constructing some of the Strip’s most famous hotels and casinos, including the Bellagio and The Mirage.
From there he started building his empire, Wynn Resorts – building luxury hotels across the globe. In the 2000s, Wynn Resorts stock went down, and finally, profits started returning in the years that followed.
16. The Bezos Family
Net Worth: $137B*
Family Business: Amazon
Prominent Member: Jeff Bezos
Jeff Bezos is one of the richest people in the world, if not the richest one. As a result, Jeff and his family members are the world’s richest elite. As a founder and CEO of Amazon, Jeff’s wealth will only continue to grow. Jeff was born into humble beginnings: his mother was a teenager when he was born, and his father only owned a small bike shop.
When he was only four his parents divorced and his mother married Mark Bezos. Jeff worked on Wall Street as a hedge fund manager, and in 1994 he founded Amazon. What started as a simple online bookstore, turn out to be the business of a century.
15. The Lucas Family
Net Worth: $5.5B*
Family Business: LucasFilm
Prominent Member: George Lucas
Being related to George Lucas definitely comes with few perks. For really close relatives it comes with life-long wealth. He first made a small fortune with American Graffiti and earned an enormous fortune with Star Wars. The Star Wars franchise was so popular and Lucas so much believed in his creation that he managed to get franchise rights from 20th Century Fox – that lead to his own successful film company.
Have you heard about LucasFilm? That company is owned by him as well. Plus, there is also LucasArts, which focuses on making video games. Disney famously bought LucasFilm in October 2012 for a staggering $4.05 billion.
14. The Jordan Family
Net Worth: $1.9B*
Family Business: The Charlotte Hornets
Industry: Sports, Entertainment
Prominent Member: Michael Jordan
Michael Jordan is probably the best NBA player ever. Many awards confirm this claim. Michael rose to international level and worldwide fame as the star of the Chicago Bulls NBA team. Today, Jordan is out of the sport, but he is highly linked to the sports business.
He even had a quick road to acting water and has one of the biggest contracts ever with Nike and Hanes. His side money comes from the Air Jordan line of sports shoes. His family should be heavy $2 billion so far. This is mostly to Muicheald move to own stakes in the Charlotte Hornets.
13. The Ballmer Family
Net worth: $47.8 billion*
Family Business: Los Angeles Clippers
Prominent Member: Steve Ballmer
The Ballmer family owes a huge part of its fortune to current patriarch Steve Ballmer. At the moment, Steve owns a significant share of the LA Clippers NBA team. Before this significant move, Steve was the CEO of giant Microsoft.
Steve was among the first employees. After his retirement in 201, Ballmer focused on sport and bought LA Clippers, making the Ballmer family billionaires multiple times over. Switching from tech to sports is possible, and Ballmer is living proof.
12. The Mellon Family
Net Worth: $11.5B*
Family Business: Mellon Bank
Prominent Member: Matthew Mellon
The Mellon family has roots in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania where people can see a university and museums named after them. The family was founded Mellon Bank in 1869, and their wealth really sky-rocketed when they invested in Gulf Oil.
They invested further in various sectors, including a news publication. They are also active when it comes to philanthropic ventures. They founded Washington D.C.’s National Gallery of Art.
11. The Koch Family
Net Worth: $98.7B*
Family Business: Koch Industries
Prominent Member: David Koch
Charles and David Koch are simply known as the Kock Brothers who run massive family wealth. In 2019, David passed away, so Charles conditioned working as CEO. They were not only famous for their wealth, but for big donations and support of the Republican party.
They are also famously known for loving to keep their money within the family. Fred Koch, a chemical engineer was the family’s original patriarch who founded an oil refinery that eventaully becomes Koch Industries. This company employees today over 120,000 workers across every continent.
10. The Hunt Family
Net Worth: $13.7B*
Family Business: Hunt Oil Company
Prominent Member: Caroline Rose Hunt
The Hunt family is not only known for its business ventures, but for television as well. The Hunt patriarch, H.L. Hunt, was the inspiration for the character of J.R. Ewing on the hit series Dallas. H.L. He founded a company based in American oil that only grew to different doctors from there.
His daughter founded her own business, Rosewood Hotels & Resorts, only to sell it a few years afterward. His son owns a huge part of the oil and gas sector, while Lamar, his other son, came up with the name for the Super Bowl.
9. The Cannon Family
Net worth: $50 million*
Family Business: TeenNick
Prominent Member: Nick Cannon
Nick Cannon is an actor, a producer, and an award-winning rapper. Next to that, he is among the richest and youngest elites. The majority of his wealth is accumulated from his best-selling music. Cannon’s popularity exploded thanks to hitting singles, such as Can I Live and Teach Me How to Dougie.
He started his own label, and afterward a small record company. He was married to music icon, Mariah Carey, with whom he had three children. The two eventually separated, but while together there were some of the most powerful couples of their time.
8. The Murdoch Family
Net Worth: $19.8B*
Family Business: News Corp.
Prominent Member: Rupert Murdoch
The Murdoch family is among the media’s biggest titans. Rupert Murdoch was born in Australia, but he became an American citizen in 1985. His family was into the media business before Rupert started exploring the media world.
However, he is responsible for expanding the business. Murdoch created News Corporation which expanded in Australia and New Zealand, producing print and television news. Rupert also expanded the business to the UK, Asia, and America.
7. The Nicholson Family
Net Worth: $400M*
Family Business: Acting Career
Prominent Member: Jack Nicholson
Jack Nicholson comes from money. This famous and three-rime Oscar-winner, in fact, comes from a big fortune. Next to his big movie project, Jack capitalized on many investments. Soem were really effective, but some were just weird.
For example, he purchased Marlon Brando’s former Hollywood home for over $6 million – only to burn it to the ground shortly thereafter. Jack said that it was in order to honor his friend. Jack’s five children will inherit his fortune of $400 million. He will continue making money from Batman spin-off and merchandise for as long as he is alive probably.
6. The Woods Family
Net Worth: $800M*
Family Business: TGR
Prominent Member: Tiger Woods, Elin Nordegren
Tiger Woods remains the most important figure in golf and the sports arena in general. It’s known that he made quite money from his sports tournament and sports deals, but he also had some massive investments.
His investments were smart and continue to grow so much, that they are all currently joined under his parent company, TGR. His family has quickly become one of the wealthiest legacies in the United States. Tiger divorces his wife Elin in 2010, after six years of marriage. She got a settlement of $100 million.
5. The Pitt Family
Net Worth: $300M*
Family Business: Plan B Productions
Industry: Film & TV
Prominent Member: Brad Pitt
The family of Brad Pitt and Angeline Jolie made it big time. Originally, Pitt is the son of a trucker. Young Brad decided to trey acting world and moved to Hollywood during the 1990s. Pitt decided to put money from acting into making more money.
Therefore, he invested in real estate, vineyards, and even launch his wine and olive oil line. Today, he shared custody over six children with his ex-wife Angelina Jolies. Considering that together Brad and Angelina are worth around $400 million, their children are financially well-secured.
4. The Kardashian-Jenner Family
Net Worth: $2B*
Family Business: Keeping Up With the Kardashians
Industry: Media, Cosmetics
Prominent Member: Kylie Jenner
Everyone knows that Kylie Jenner is a billionaire. She even made it as such on Forbes list of billionaires in 2020. The powerful Kardashian-Jenner clan has had its ups and downs, but they are always going hard. This Jermenian-American family is one of the riches in the world. They made their fortune thanks to the TV reality show, Keeping Up with the Kardashians.
It will finally end in 2021, and so far it has been one of the longest-running reality series on television ever. Besides the show, family members are active within different business ventures and are making money from everything that they touch. All in all, their net worth is around $2 billion. Not too bad for one family working as a team.
3. The Mars Family
Net Worth: $89.7B*
Family Business: Mars Inc.
Prominent Member: Jacqueline Mars
Franklin Clarence Mars invented the Milky Way chocolate bar and it changes the world. That was almost a century ago and people still enjoy that candy. So, just imagine that life’s success! Bringing joy to others after you are long gone. The success of the Milky Way was followed by other sweets, including Skittles, Snickers, Twix, Big Red gum, and M&M’s.
Today, Marks Inc. has expanded and now offers pet care products, drinks, and life sciences even. Victoria B. Mars served as the CEO for Mars Inc for years before stepping down. Still, she is still an active member of the board. Just her net worth is around $7 billion.
2. The Hearst Family
Net Worth: $24.5B*
Family Business: Hearst Corporation
Prominent Member: Patty Hearst
The Hearst family traces its wealth back to publishing kingpin William Randolph Hearst. His father was a wealthy miner, but William wanted to have a business of his own. Therefore, he used his father’s money to purchase The San Francisco Examiner at age 24, and the rest is history.
He expanded fast to the radio, TV, and newspaper empire. Rumor has it that William was actually an inspiration for the titular character in Orson Welles’ classic Citizen Kane. Hearst’s son, William II, went on to become a Pulitzer-winning journalist. To the younger generation, the name Patty Hearst may sound familiar. She was kidnapping by the Symbionese Liberation Army in the ’70s. Patty was rescued two years later.
1. Walton Family
Net Worth: $249.B*
Family Business: Walmart
Prominent Member: Sam Walton
You may not hear about the Walton family before, but you have definitely heard about Walmart. The Waltons are the richest family in America thanks to the massive stage they have in Walmart, the world’s largest retailer by sales. About half of Walmart’s stock is held by seven heirs of founders Sam Walton (d. 1992) and his brother James “Bud” (d. 1995).
Fortune was founded in 196 and the company headquarters are at Bentonville, Arkansas. In 2011 Christy Walton opened the Crystal Bridges Museum in Bentonville.