Fortunes have been made in Massachusetts through a variety of industries and sectors, including technology, finance, healthcare, and real estate. The state is home to some of the world’s most prestigious universities, including Harvard and MIT, which have produced many successful entrepreneurs and innovators.
Some of the key industries that have driven wealth creation in Massachusetts include biotechnology and pharmaceuticals, with major companies such as Biogen and Vertex Pharmaceuticals based in the state. Massachusetts is also a hub for technology companies, with major players like Microsoft, Amazon, and Google all having a significant presence in the state.
Real estate development has also played a significant role in wealth creation in Massachusetts, with several prominent developers and investors such as Stephen Ross and Gerald Chan based in the state.
In addition, Massachusetts has a long history of financial innovation, with many of the world’s leading investment firms and hedge funds based in the state. This has led to the accumulation of significant wealth by individuals such as Seth Klarman, Jim Davis, and Edward Johnson III.
Overall, Massachusetts has a diverse economy and a rich history of innovation and entrepreneurship, which has enabled many individuals to amass significant fortunes across a range of industries and sectors.
Here are the ten richest people in Massachusetts, according to Forbes’ Real-Time Billionaires list (as of September 2021):
Abigail Johnson – CEO of Fidelity Investments
Abigail Johnson is a businesswoman and the CEO of Fidelity Investments, one of the largest asset management companies in the world. She was born on December 19, 1961, in Boston, Massachusetts, and is the daughter of Edward C. Johnson III, the former CEO of Fidelity Investments.
Johnson received a Bachelor of Arts degree in art history from Hobart and William Smith Colleges in 1984 and later earned an MBA from Harvard Business School in 1988. She joined Fidelity Investments in 1988 and held a number of positions at the company before being appointed CEO in 2014. Prior to becoming CEO, Johnson served as president of Fidelity’s mutual fund division, which manages over $2 trillion in assets.
Under Johnson’s leadership, Fidelity has continued to expand its offerings, including launching several new index funds and exchange-traded funds (ETFs) and investing in new technologies such as blockchain and cryptocurrency. Johnson has also been recognized for her philanthropic work, including supporting education and healthcare initiatives through the Abigail and Andrew Johnson Scholarship Fund and the Fidelity Charitable Foundation.
As of 2021, Forbes estimates Johnson’s net worth to be $21.7 billion, making her one of the wealthiest women in the world.
Jim Davis – Chairman of New Balance
Jim Davis is a businessman and philanthropist who is the chairman of New Balance, a global footwear and apparel brand. He was born on August 3, 1943, in Lynn, Massachusetts, and attended Middlebury College in Vermont, where he played varsity soccer.
Davis joined New Balance, which was founded by his father-in-law, in 1972 and served as CEO for many years before becoming the chairman of the board. Under his leadership, New Balance has grown into one of the world’s largest athletic footwear brands, with sales of over $4 billion annually.
Davis is also a well-known philanthropist and has donated millions of dollars to causes such as education, medical research, and the arts. In 2002, he and his wife, Anne, founded the New Balance Foundation, which provides grants to nonprofit organizations working to promote healthy lifestyles and youth sports.
In addition to his business and philanthropic work, Davis is an avid sailor and has competed in several world championship races. He also serves on the board of trustees at Middlebury College and the Boston Children’s Hospital, among other organizations.
As of 2021, Forbes estimates Davis’ net worth to be $8.5 billion, making him one of the wealthiest people in Massachusetts.
Edward Johnson III – Former CEO of Fidelity Investments
Edward Johnson III is a businessman and former CEO of Fidelity Investments, one of the largest asset management companies in the world. He was born on January 4, 1930, in Boston, Massachusetts, and is the grandson of the company’s founder, Edward C. Johnson II.
Johnson graduated from Harvard College in 1954 and later earned an MBA from Harvard Business School in 1957. He joined Fidelity Investments in 1957 and held a number of positions at the company before being named CEO in 1977. Under his leadership, Fidelity grew into one of the largest mutual fund companies in the world, with over $1 trillion in assets under management.
Johnson is known for his conservative investment philosophy and his commitment to keeping expenses low for Fidelity’s clients. He also oversaw the creation of the first retail money market fund in 1972, which revolutionized the way individuals invest their cash.
Johnson stepped down as CEO of Fidelity in 2012 but remains active in the company as chairman emeritus. He is also a noted philanthropist and has donated millions of dollars to various causes, including education and medical research.
As of 2021, Forbes estimates Johnson’s net worth to be $8.4 billion, making him one of the wealthiest people in Massachusetts.
Robert Kraft – Owner of the New England Patriots
Robert Kraft is a businessman and philanthropist who is the owner of the New England Patriots, a professional American football team in the National Football League (NFL). He was born on June 5, 1941, in Brookline, Massachusetts.
Kraft attended Columbia University, where he earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in economics. He later received a Master of Business Administration from Harvard Business School. After graduation, Kraft began his career in the packaging industry, eventually founding his own company, The Kraft Group, in 1968.
In addition to owning the New England Patriots, Kraft has also owned other professional sports teams, including the New England Revolution of Major League Soccer (MLS). He is widely credited with helping to turn around the fortunes of the Patriots, leading the team to six Super Bowl championships since he purchased the team in 1994.
Kraft is also a noted philanthropist and has donated millions of dollars to various causes, including education, healthcare, and the arts. In 2011, he and his family donated $20 million to establish the Kraft Family Stadium at Columbia University’s Baker Athletics Complex.
In recent years, Kraft has faced controversy over his alleged involvement in a prostitution ring in Florida in 2019. He has denied the charges and the case was later dropped due to the evidence being suppressed.
As of 2021, Forbes estimates Kraft’s net worth to be $6.9 billion, making him one of the wealthiest people in Massachusetts.
Amos Hostetter Jr. – Founder of Continental Cablevision
Amos Hostetter Jr. is a businessman and philanthropist who is the founder of Continental Cablevision, one of the largest cable television companies in the United States. He was born on September 22, 1937, in Boston, Massachusetts.
Hostetter graduated from Harvard University in 1958 and later earned an MBA from Harvard Business School in 1960. He began his career at the Boston-based investment firm Cabot, Cabot & Forbes before founding Continental Cablevision in 1963.
Under Hostetter’s leadership, Continental Cablevision grew rapidly and became one of the largest cable television companies in the United States. In 1996, the company was sold to US West for $11 billion.
In addition to his business success, Hostetter is also a noted philanthropist and has donated millions of dollars to various causes, including education, the arts, and the environment. He and his wife Barbara founded the Barr Foundation, which focuses on supporting initiatives that promote environmental sustainability, educational attainment, and vibrant communities in the Boston area.
Hostetter has also been active in politics and has donated to both Republican and Democratic candidates. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and has served on the boards of several nonprofit organizations, including the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston.
As of 2021, Forbes estimates Hostetter’s net worth to be $3.5 billion, making him one of the wealthiest people in Massachusetts.
John Grayken – Founder of Lone Star Funds
John Grayken is a businessman and private equity investor who is the founder and chairman of Lone Star Funds, a global private equity firm. He was born on June 14, 1956, in Cohasset, Massachusetts.
Grayken graduated from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School with a Bachelor of Science in economics in 1978. He began his career as a bond trader at Morgan Stanley before moving on to work at several other investment firms, including the now-defunct investment bank Drexel Burnham Lambert.
In 1995, Grayken founded Lone Star Funds with a focus on investing in distressed real estate assets. Over the years, the firm has expanded into other areas, including corporate debt, private equity, and nonperforming loans. As of 2021, Lone Star Funds has over $70 billion in assets under management.
Grayken is known for his low public profile and his aversion to media attention. However, he is also known for his philanthropic efforts, particularly his support for education and healthcare. He has donated millions of dollars to various causes, including the Grayken Center for Addiction Medicine at Boston Medical Center, which focuses on research and treatment of substance abuse disorders.
As of 2021, Forbes estimates Grayken’s net worth to be $6.5 billion, making him one of the wealthiest people in Massachusetts.
Barry Sternlicht -CEO of Starwood Capital Group
Barry Sternlicht is an American businessman and investor who is best known as the founder and CEO of Starwood Capital Group, a private investment firm that specializes in real estate investments. He was born on November 27, 1960, in New York City.
Sternlicht graduated from Brown University with a degree in economics before earning his MBA from Harvard Business School. After working for several years in real estate finance and investment banking, he founded Starwood Capital Group in 1991. Under his leadership, the firm has become one of the largest and most successful private equity firms in the world, with a focus on real estate investments across a range of sectors, including hotels, office buildings, and residential properties.
In addition to his work in finance, Sternlicht is also known for his philanthropic efforts. He is a founding board member of the Robin Hood Foundation, a charity that seeks to alleviate poverty in New York City, and has also been involved in efforts to promote environmental sustainability and combat climate change.
As of 2021, Forbes estimates Sternlicht’s net worth to be $4.3 billion, making him one of the wealthiest people in Massachusetts, where he resides.
Seth Klarman is an American investor and hedge fund manager who is the founder and CEO of Baupost Group, a private investment partnership based in Boston, Massachusetts. He was born on May 21, 1957, in New York City.
Klarman graduated from Cornell University with a degree in economics before earning his MBA from Harvard Business School. He began his career in finance working for several investment firms before founding Baupost Group in 1982. Under his leadership, the firm has become one of the most successful and respected hedge funds in the world, with a focus on value investing and risk management.
Klarman is also known for his philanthropic efforts. He has donated millions of dollars to support medical research and education, and he has also been involved in efforts to promote social justice and combat poverty.
As of 2021, Forbes estimates Klarman’s net worth to be $4.1 billion, making him one of the wealthiest people in Massachusetts, where he resides.
Brian Halligan – Co-founder and CEO of HubSpot
Brian Halligan is an American entrepreneur and businessman who is the co-founder and CEO of HubSpot, a leading provider of inbound marketing and sales software. He was born on December 14, 1967, in New York City.
Halligan attended the University of Vermont, where he earned a degree in mechanical engineering, and later received an MBA from the MIT Sloan School of Management. Before co-founding HubSpot in 2006, Halligan worked at several technology companies, including Groove Networks, Parametric Technology Corporation, and IBM.
Under Halligan’s leadership, HubSpot has grown into a publicly-traded company with over 6,000 employees and more than 100,000 customers worldwide. The company’s software helps businesses attract, engage, and delight customers through a variety of digital channels, including social media, email, and search engines.
In addition to his work at HubSpot, Halligan is a frequent speaker and author on the topics of entrepreneurship and marketing. He has co-authored two books, “Inbound Marketing: Get Found Using Google, Social Media, and Blogs” and “Marketing Lessons from the Grateful Dead: What Every Business Can Learn from the Most Iconic Band in History”.
As of 2021, Forbes estimates Halligan’s net worth to be $1.4 billion, making him one of the wealthiest people in Massachusetts.
Brian Halligan lives in Massachusetts. HubSpot, the company he co-founded and leads as CEO, is headquartered in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
James Pallotta – Founder of Raptor Group
James Pallotta is an American businessman and investor who is primarily known for his work in the finance and sports industries. He was born on July 7, 1958, in Boston, Massachusetts.
Pallotta is the founder and chairman of the Raptor Group, a private investment firm based in Boston. He has also been involved in several successful business ventures, including serving as the managing director of Tudor Investment Corporation, a hedge fund founded by billionaire Paul Tudor Jones.
In addition to his work in finance, Pallotta is also known for his involvement in sports. He was a minority owner of the Boston Celtics basketball team from 2002 to 2006, and later served as the chairman and co-owner of AS Roma, an Italian soccer club. He has also been involved in efforts to bring a professional soccer team to the city of Boston.
Pallotta is also known for his philanthropic work. He has made significant donations to educational institutions, including his alma mater, Tufts University, and has been involved in efforts to promote education and economic development in developing countries.
As of 2021, Forbes estimates Pallotta’s net worth to be $1.1 billion, making him one of the wealthiest people in Massachusetts.
It’s worth noting that these rankings may change over time as a result of fluctuations in the stock market or other factors affecting the net worth of these individuals.