Melinda French Gates is an esteemed American philanthropist with a notable background as a former multimedia product developer and manager at Microsoft. She is also recognized as the ex-wife of Bill Gates, the co-founder of Microsoft and a billionaire. Melinda Gates has consistently been acknowledged as one of the world's most influential women by Forbes magazine.
This article aims to delve into the life of Melinda Gates, encompassing her biography, net worth, age, height, education, career trajectory, familial connections, relationships, and other significant aspects.
Melinda Ann French was born on August 15, 1964, in Dallas, Texas. She has three siblings and her parents are Raymond Joseph French Jr., who worked as an aerospace engineer, and Elaine Agnes Amerland, who was a homemaker. Melinda attended St. Monica Catholic School, where she excelled and became the top student in her class. Also Read - Elon Musk's Biography.
|Bill Gates & Melinda Gates|
When she was 14 years old, her father and one of her teachers introduced her to the Apple II computer. This sparked her interest in computer games and programming using the BASIC language. Melinda graduated as the valedictorian from Ursuline Academy of Dallas in 1982.
She went on to study at Duke University, where she earned a bachelor's degree in computer science and economics in 1986. Later, in 1987, Melinda obtained an MBA from Duke's Fuqua School of Business. During her time at Duke, she was a member of the Kappa Alpha Theta sorority, Beta Rho Chapter.
According to the Bloomberg Billionaire Index, Melinda Gates currently holds a net worth of approximately $12 billion. The majority of her wealth stems from her divorce settlement with Bill Gates, which they decided to settle privately without going to court.
Reports indicate that Melinda received at least $6 billion worth of Microsoft stocks as part of the settlement, making it one of the most expensive divorces in history. With such a significant fortune at her disposal, Melinda has notably increased her philanthropic endeavors, using her resources to further contribute to charitable causes.
After graduating, French Gates started her career by tutoring children in math and computer programming. She then joined Microsoft as a marketing manager, where she played a key role in developing multimedia products like Cinemania, Encarta, and Microsoft Bob. She also contributed to the success of Expedia, a popular travel booking website. Also Read - Jeff Bezos' Biography.
|Melinda Gates Career|
During the early 1990s, French Gates became the General Manager of Information Products at Microsoft. However, in 1996, she left the company to focus on starting a family. Alongside her professional endeavors, she served as a member of Duke University's Board of Trustees from 1996 to 2003 and has been involved in various organizations, including the Bilderberg Group and Graham Holdings.
Since the year 2000, French Gates has been actively engaged in philanthropic work through the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Together with her former husband, they have donated a significant portion of their wealth, totaling $59.1 billion as of 2022. In 2015, she also established Pivotal Ventures, an organization dedicated to finding solutions for issues impacting women and families in the United States.
In 2019, French Gates published her first book, "The Moment of Lift: How Empowering Women Changes the World." The book sheds light on the importance of recognizing women's unpaid work and draws inspiration from feminist economist Dame Marilyn Waring's work in "If Women Counted."
Melinda started dating Bill Gates, the CEO of Microsoft, in 1987 after meeting him at a trade fair in New York. They got married in 1994 in a private ceremony in Lanai, Hawaii. They have three children: Jennifer, Phoebe, and Rory. The family lives in a special underground house with a view of Lake Washington in Medina, Washington. They also own a house by the ocean in Del Mar, California. Also Read - Mauricio Umansky's Biography.
|Melinda Gates at an Event|
In May 2021, Melinda and Bill Gates announced their decision to divorce after being together for 34 years, including 27 years of marriage. The news was shared on social media. It was reported that Melinda had met with divorce lawyers since October 2019 due to concerns about her husband's association with convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein. She had even warned him about it in 2013.
Despite not having a prenuptial agreement, Melinda did not request spousal support. Bill Gates transferred over $6 billion worth of shares and stocks as part of the divorce settlement. The divorce was finalized on August 2, 2021.
Achievements & Awards
Melinda and Bill Gates received several prestigious honors and awards for their philanthropic work. In 2002, they were recognized with the Award for Greatest Public Service Benefiting the Disadvantaged from Jefferson Awards. Their dedication to making a positive impact on the lives of disadvantaged individuals was acknowledged and appreciated.
In 2005, Time magazine honored Melinda and Bill Gates, along with Bono, as Persons of the Year. This recognition showcased their significant contributions to philanthropy and their influence on global issues. They were lauded for their commitment to improving the world through their charitable endeavors.
Throughout the years, Melinda French Gates has received numerous accolades for her philanthropic efforts. She was appointed an honorary Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire (DBE) in 2013 and received India's Padma Bhushan in 2015. In 2016, Melinda and Bill were presented with the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President Barack Obama. These honors reflect their exceptional dedication and contributions to creating positive change in society.
Q. How old is Melinda Gates?
A. Melinda Gates is 58 years old (Born - 15 August 1964).
Q. How tall is Melinda Gates?
A. Melinda Gates is 5 ft 7 (170 cms) inches tall.
Q. How much is Melinda Gates' net worth?
A. According to the Bloomberg Billionaire Index, Melinda Gates currently holds a net worth of approximately $12 billion.
Q. Why is Melinda Gates powerful?
A. Melinda Gates holds a prominent position among influential women in the realm of philanthropy, as the co-founder of the esteemed Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.