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Billionaires who live in the smallest American towns

  • Billionaires who live in the smallest American towns

    Billions of dollars in wealth could easily get you a swanky penthouse in the most upscale neighborhood of any city in the United States. But for some of American’s billionaires, small towns are home.

    Perhaps not shockingly, the highest concentrations of “ultra-high-net-worth” individuals—or people with $30 million or more in assets—are in New York City, Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco, and Washington D.C.

    Of the global billionaire population, more live in New York, Hong Kong, Moscow, Beijing, and London than anywhere else in the world, reports Forbes. But of the 680 billionaires that live in the United States, quite a few have chosen to live in quieter locales that are much more remote, have sparse populations, and offer plenty of space for sprawling complexes of mansions and gardens.

    Phoenix Marketing International in 2019 reported the small town with the highest concentration of millionaires in the country is Summit Park, Utah (based on data from U.S. Census Bureau). Of the households in the Salt Lake City suburb known for its luxurious ski resorts and famed film festivals, 12.5% are millionaires, and the median annual income among residents is a whopping $94,952.

    And of states, Maryland has the most millionaires per capita, with more than one in 12 households reporting assets of $1 million or more. According to experts, this could be because of the growth of government contracting and lobbying in the Washington D.C. area. New Jersey takes second place for the most millionaires per capita, followed by Connecticut, Hawaii, and Alaska.

    Stacker compiled a list of 25 billionaires that live in the smallest American towns, using current data from the Forbes’ Real-Time Billionaires List and 2018 5-Year Estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau’s American Community Survey (released December 2019). Billionaires are ranked by the population of their towns, and ties are broken by their net worth. The billionaire, their place of residence, their net worth, their age, and where their wealth came from are all included in this list.

    Read on to find out where the rich and powerful live in the hidden corners of the United States.

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  • #25. Gwendolyn Sontheim Meyer

    - Current residence: Rancho Santa Fe, California (Population: 2,591)
    - Net worth: $3.1 billion
    - Source of wealth: Cargill
    - Age: 59

    Gwendolyn Sontheim Meyer is an heiress of Cargill, a food and agricultural corporation that is the largest private company in the United States. Meyer is an equestrian, and trains show-jumping horses on her farm in Rancho Santa Fe, California.

  • #24. Amy Goldman Fowler

    - Current residence: Rhinebeck, New York (Population: 2,583)
    - Net worth: $3.0 billion
    - Source of wealth: real estate
    - Age: 66

    Amy Goldman Fowler lives on a 200-acre farm in Rhinebeck, New York, where she gardens and lives with her husband, who is an agriculturalist. Fowler is a fierce advocate for seed saving, plant breeding, and heirloom fruits and vegetables and is the vice chair of the New York Botanical Garden. Her father, Sol Goldman, made his money in real estate in New York City, and Fowler worked in his office when she was younger.

  • #23. Herbert Kohler Jr. and family

    - Current residence: Kohler, Wisconsin (Population: 2,193)
    - Net worth: $8.3 billion
    - Source of wealth: plumbing fixtures
    - Age: 81

    Herbert Kohler Jr. is the grandson of John Michael Kohler, the founder of the well-known plumbing fixture company. Currently acting as the executive chairman of the company, Kohler Jr. was also the CEO until 2015 when he stepped down from the position after 43 years. Despite his billionaire status, Kohler still resides in the small town where the family company was founded back in 1873.

  • #22. Pablo Legorreta

    - Current residence: Sag Harbor, New York (Population: 2,184)
    - Net worth: $2.6 billion
    - Source of wealth: investments
    - Age: 57

    Pablo Legorreta is the founder of Royalty Pharma, the largest acquirer of pharmaceutical revenue streams in the world. He founded the company in 1996 and currently acts as the sole manager of the company’s $17 billion in assets. The billionaire calls the small village of Sag Harbor on Long Island, New York, home.

  • #21. Gary Friedman

    - Current residence: Belvedere, California (Population: 2,098)
    - Net worth: $2.2 billion
    - Source of wealth: Furniture retail
    - Age: 63

    Gary Friedman, CEO and chairman of high-end furniture retailer RH (formerly Restoration Hardware), has spent years making a name for himself in the retail space. Beginning his professional life as a stock boy for Gap, Friedman helped grow Pottery Barn and Williams-Sonoma Inc. from million- to billion-dollar companies. He lives in Belvedere, California, a small town in Marin County he fell in love with early in his life. Friedman bought his first house there in 2003.

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  • #20. Nelson Peltz

    - Current residence: Bedford, New York (Population: 2,074)
    - Net worth: $1.7 billion
    - Source of wealth: investments
    - Age: 78

    Nelson Peltz, who made his fortune by investing in small companies, bought his 27-room home in Bedford, New York, in the 1980s for $6 million. In the ’90s, Peltz annoyed many of his neighbors by commuting to work via his 52-foot-long helicopter, bypassing the traffic from his home to New York City.

  • #19. George Soros

    - Current residence: Katonah, New York (Population: 1,895)
    - Net worth: $8.6 billion
    - Source of wealth: hedge funds
    - Age: 90

    George Soros was born in Hungary but emigrated to the United States after surviving the Holocaust and created Soros Fund Management in 1970. Soros purchased his home in Katonah, New York, from author Michael Crichton for $19 million in 2003. He later bought two adjacent parcels of land from Crichton.

  • #18. Amy Wyss

    - Current residence: Wilson, Wyoming (Population: 1,731)
    - Net worth: $2.0 billion
    - Source of wealth: medical equipment
    - Age: 50

    Amy Wyss is the daughter of Swiss billionaire Hansjoerg Wyss, who started the medical equipment company Synthes. In 2012, Johnson & Johnson bought Synthes for $19.7 billion, of which Wyss received a portion. Just a few years earlier in 2007, Wyss launched the LOR Foundation with the aim of bettering the quality of life for rural American families.

  • #17. Larry Robbins

    - Current residence: Alpine, New Jersey (Population: 1,513)
    - Net worth: $1.9 billion
    - Source of wealth: hedge funds
    - Age: 51

    Larry Robbins is the founder and CEO of New York-based hedge fund Glenview Capital Management, which manages about $8 billion in assets. Robbins is also active in New York City area philanthropy, advocating for education reform through the Robbins Family Foundation and serving as chairman of the Robin Hood Foundation, which targets local poverty.

  • #16. James Leprino

    - Current residence: Indian Hills, Colorado (Population: 1,408)
    - Net worth: $3.0 billion
    - Source of wealth: cheese
    - Age: 83

    James Leprino is the owner of Leprino Foods, the largest mozzarella cheese producer in the world. In fact, Leprino Foods sells cheese to Domino’s, Little Caesars, Pizza Hut, and Papa John’s. The company has a processing facility in northern Colorado and is headquartered in Denver.

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