About Jeffrey Preston Bezos (Jorgensen)
Jeffrey Preston "Jeff" Bezos born January 12, 1964) is an American Internet entrepreneur and investor. He is a technology entrepreneur who has played a key role in the growth of e-commerce as the founder and CEO of Amazon.com, an online merchant of books and later of a wide variety of products. Under his guidance, Amazon.com became the largest retailer on the World Wide Web and a top model for Internet sales. In 2013, Bezos purchased The Washington Post newspaper.
Bezos was born Jeffrey Preston Jorgensen in Albuquerque, New Mexico to Jacklyn (née Gise) and Ted Jorgensen. His maternal ancestors were settlers who lived in Texas, and over the generations acquired a 25,000 acre (101 km2 or 39 miles2) ranch near Cotulla. Bezos's maternal grandfather was a regional director of the U.S. Atomic Energy Commission in Albuquerque. He retired early to the ranch, where Bezos spent many summers as a youth, working with him. At an early age, he displayed mechanical aptitude – as a toddler, he tried dismantling his crib.
Bezos's mother was a teenager at the time. Her marriage to his father lasted a little more than a year. When Jeff was four, she remarried, to Miguel Bezos, a Cuban who emigrated to the United States alone when he was fifteen years old, worked his way through the University of Albuquerque, married, and legally adopted his stepson Jeff. After the marriage, the family moved to Houston, Texas, and Miguel became an engineer for Exxon.
Bezos often showed intense scientific interests. He was high school valedictorian and attended Princeton University, intending to study physics, but soon returned to his love of computers and graduated summa cum laude, with a Bachelor of Science in Engineering in electrical engineering and computer science. While at Princeton, he was elected to the honor societies Phi Beta Kappa and Tau Beta Pi. He also served as the President of the Princeton chapter of the Students for the Exploration and Development of Space.
According to Nick Hanauer (an early investor in Amazon) and "others who know [him]", Bezos is described as a libertarian. In July 2012, Bezos and his wife personally donated $2.5 million to pass a same-sex marriage referendum in Washington. Bezos has spent $42 million to fund the first full-scale Clock of the Long Now, designed to last 10,000 years. Bezos and his wife, MacKenzie Bezos, have four children.
Bezos founded Amazon.com in 1994 after making a cross-country drive from New York to Seattle, writing up the Amazon business plan on the way. He initially set up the company in his garage. He had left his "well-paying job" at a New York City hedge fund when he "learned about the rapid growth in Internet use", which coincided with a "then-new U.S. Supreme Court ruling [that] online retailers [would not] have to collect sales taxes in states where they lack a physical presence"; he had headed to Washington because its relatively small population meant fewer of his future customers would have to pay sales tax.
Bezos is known for his attention to business details. As described by Portfolio.com, he "is at once a happy-go-lucky mogul and a notorious micromanager: "an executive who wants to know about everything from contract minutiae to how he is quoted in all Amazon press releases."[
In 2000, Bezos founded Blue Origin, a human spaceflight startup company, partially as a result of his fascination with space travel, including an early interest in developing "space hotels, amusement parks and colonies for 2 million or 3 million people orbiting the Earth."
In 2013, Bezos is reportedly discussing business opportunities and strategies with Richard Branson, multibillionaire founder of Virgin Group and Chairman of Virgin Galactic.
The Washington Post
On August 5, 2013, Bezos announced his purchase of The Washington Post for $250 million in cash. The sale is personal to Bezos. Amazon.com will not be involved. "This is uncharted terrain," he told the newspaper, "and it will require experimentation."
He was named Time magazine's Person of the Year in 1999. In 2008, he was selected by U.S. News & World Report as one of America's best leaders. In 2011, The Economist gave Bezos and Gregg Zehr an Innovation Award for the Amazon Kindle. In 2012, Bezos was named Businessperson of The Year by Fortune.
As of August 2013, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, Bezos is listed as one of the wealthiest people in the world with an estimated net worth of $28 billion. He was ranked the second best CEO in the world by Harvard Business Review, after Steve Jobs of Apple.
An expedition funded by Jeff Bezos has recovered two powerful Saturn V first-stage F-1 rocket engines from the Atlantic Ocean. They were positively identified as belonging to the Apollo 11 mission's S-1C stage in July 2013. . . .More