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Wife of a billionaire, mother of three children and a defender of women's rights: what do we know about Melinda Gates


Source: Gossip

On October 28, Bill Gates celebrated his birthday, and on October 5 it became known that French businessman Bernard Arnault pushed Gates from second to third in the list of the richest people in the world - and yet he remained in the top three (in the first position - Jeff Bezos) ... But while a lot has already been said about Gates himself and the history of his success, not everyone knows about his faithful life partner, wife Melinda.


Correct this injustice and get acquainted with this amazing and interesting woman offers Gossip.

Origin and Education

Melinda Ann French was born 15 on August 1964 in Dallas, Texas, in the family of aerospace engineer Raymond Joseph French, Jr., who had a real estate rental business, and housewife Elaine Agnes Emerland. Melinda has an older sister and two younger brothers.

Already in childhood, she began to show great interest in computers and the exact sciences. Melinda studied at the St. Monica Catholic School, and then at the Ursuline Academy of Dallas, which she graduated in 18 years. She graduated from Duke University in North Carolina, which she graduated with a bachelor's degree in two specialties: economics and programming.


Getting Started and Getting to Know Bill Gates

A year after graduation, in 1987, she got a job at Microsoft, and immediately became the head of sales. She had more than a hundred employees under her command, Melinda coped with her duties perfectly, and her career quickly went uphill.

Soon, she met with Bill Gates at a briefing in New York. Melinda was (however, and remains now) a very beautiful and spectacular girl, but appearance is not what Gates first paid attention to. He was attracted to Melinda's mind and intellect. He understood that she was very clever before he even talked to her. Bill drew attention to Melinda’s shoes, and then she was wearing flat shoes. Recalling the theory that the lower the heel of their owner, the smarter it is, Gates immediately concluded that this charming stranger must have remarkable intelligence, and he was right.

On the same evening, he invited her to dinner. True, he made the first date only two weeks later, and Melinda even at first refused him, because, according to her, Bill "was not spontaneous enough." Then he called her two hours later and made an appointment for the same evening.

On the subject: The wife of Bill Gates revealed the main secret of 25-year marriage with a billionaire

Start a relationship and wedding

Soon, Melinda and Bill began to meet. Their relationship did not interfere with work, despite the fact that they even sat in neighboring offices. As Melinda admitted, in Bill she was attracted by a sense of humor and his brilliant mind.

The couple did not rush things and became engaged only six years after the start of the relationship. To celebrate their engagement, they went to Africa, where they saw the terrible conditions of the locals, and thought about how they could help them.

Melinda and Bill got married on 1 on January 1994 in Hawaii at the Manele Bay Hotel. Even then, Gates was a very successful businessman and an enviable groom, so the public's attention to him was increased. To keep his personal holiday private, Gates, foreseeing the resonance that would cause his marriage, bought all the charter flights to Hawaii and booked all the hotel rooms where they celebrated the wedding - a celebration that took place with friends and relatives was not overshadowed by outsiders . Gates then spent a million dollars on his wedding, which now, of course, doesn’t seem like such a big sum for famous and wealthy people like him.


Having celebrated the wedding warmly, the newlyweds decided to spend their honeymoon where swimsuits and swimming trunks would never be useful, Bill and Melinda went to the northernmost state of the USA, to Alaska.

This year, the couple celebrated their 25 wedding anniversary. According to Gates, over the years she and her husband, of course, had misunderstandings in relations, there were difficulties and difficulties (for example, she was very angry with her husband because, instead of helping her with three children, he sat and read a book about Winston Churchill), but they could cope with all this. The main secret of a long and happy marriage, according to Melinda, is patience.

Activities after marriage

Shortly after the wedding, Melinda left her post and decided to devote herself to the family. Two years after the wedding, in 1996, the couple had a daughter, Jennifer. In the 1999 year, they became parents for the second time - their son Rory was born, and in the 2002 year their family became even larger - the Phates were born to the Gates couple.

Melinda admitted that when she became pregnant with her first child, she felt lonely for the first time, as her husband worked constantly and spent a lot of time traveling, but she did not know what she wanted to do next.

However, Melinda did not want to be a simple housewife, so in 1996 she began working in her husband's charity fund, which deals with medical assistance to third world countries and educational issues. The Foundation was established in 1994, shortly after the couple traveled to Africa, and in 2000, it was renamed the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

“It was an incredible journey. But what really touched us was the people and extreme poverty, ”Melinda later recalled.


Throughout its existence, the Bill and Melinda Foundation have contributed to better health and education in more than 130 countries. Now it is the world's largest private charitable foundation - its assets amount to more than 50 billion dollars.

In 2006, Melinda led the fundraising campaign for the Seattle Children's Hospital's research program — eventually raising 300 million dollars. And in the 2012 year at the TED conference, she announced that she would do everything to improve the access of women in third world countries to contraception, and donated 560 millions of dollars to create this system.

According to her, this decision was not easy for her, since she received a good Catholic education and is Catholic.

“I was brought up to believe that contraceptives are not approved. This decision was difficult for me. I have traveled to developing countries and many women have told me what they need for family planning. And I thought that there is not a single country that has moved from an average living standard to a high one over the past 50 years without providing the population with wide access to contraceptives. If we care for women, we must provide contraception, as this is the greatest tool for fighting poverty, ”she said.

For this, she, by the way, was subjected to harsh criticism from the Vatican.


Last year, the Melinda and Bill Gates Foundation introduced a new project - a toilet, which does not require a connection to the sewer. The toilet will process human waste into fertilizers using chemicals. The main goal of Bill Gates' new invention is to reduce the number of dangerous diseases.

In the 2013 year, Melinda Gates was awarded the honorary title of Commander of the Order of the British Empire for charitable activities, in the 2015 year, the civilian state award of India, the Order of Padma Bshuhan. In 2016, Melinda and Bill Gates were awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, which they were awarded by Barack Obama. A year later, in Berlin, she was awarded the Otto Gahn Peace Medal for outstanding services in the field of peace and international understanding.

On the subject: Children of the richest: how the eldest daughter of Bill Gates lives. A PHOTO

Interesting Facts

1. Originally Melinda Gates did not plan to work at Microsoft. After graduation, she was offered a job at IBM, where she worked for several summer vacations during her studies, so continuing her career there seemed logical. However, at the interview, she said that she will have another interview - at Microsoft.

“The HR manager told me that if I get a job offer from Microsoft, I have to agree, as they have great prospects,” said Melinda.

2. In 2015 year she founded her own company Pivotal Ventures, which Gates said deals with "women's issues." Pivotal Ventures has invested in companies that advocate paid family leave, provide exemplary mental health services for adolescents, and seek to close the technology gender gap.

3. Melinda Gates has been on the list for many years most influential women according to Forbes. In 2018, she took the sixth line in it.

4. She has created an online community Evoke. According to Melinda herself, this is "a community of people who believe that the world can become a better place and are ready to contribute to its improvement."


5. Melinda regularly meditates.

“I get up at 6.30:XNUMX am doing meditation, stretching, yoga and spiritual reading,” she says.

6. This year melinda gates released her first book “The Moment of Lift: How Empowering Women Changes the World”, in which she talked about her experiences as a philanthropist and touched on pressing global issues. She is an active advocate for women's rights and believes it is very important to involve them in technical jobs.

“As part of the work of the foundation, I have been meeting men and women around the world for 20 years now, and many women have shared their stories with me. And by sharing my personal experiences, I hope to encourage others to take action to empower women, ”she says.

7. According to Melinda, she and her husband share household chores equally.

“After another dinner, I realized that I had stayed a lot in the kitchen after everyone had left,” she recalls.

Since then, family members began to help her with household chores, and they began to wash the dishes with Bill in turn.


8. Among the favorite TV series Melinda Gates - “Crown” (The Crown), “This is Us” (This is Us), “A Million Little Things” (A Million Little Things) and “Silicon Valley” (Silicon Valley).

9. Melinda Gates - Active user of social networks: She has Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook accounts. She devotes them mainly to her charity work.

10. His children Melinda and Bill Gates don't pamper. They refused to create trust funds for children and decided to give them a good education, practically depriving them of their inheritance.

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