Trump Tower 5th Ave, New York City
Donald John Trump was born as a post-war child on June 14th, 1946, in New York City. His father, who died in 1999, was Fred(erick) Charles Trump and his mother Mary MacLeod Trump, who died in 2000.
Donald grew up with two sisters and two brothers: Elizabeth, MaryAnne, Robert, Fred Jr..
Heritage-wise Donald Trump's parents had roots in Scotland, where Mary MacLeod was born, and in Kallstadt, Germany, where Fred Charles's father Friedrich, was born.
Donald Trump holds a degree in economics from the Wharton School of Finance (University of Pennsylvania) where he graduated in 1968.
Ready for the real world he worked for his father in his real estate development company. His father became his mentor and taught him all skills needed for the business from scratch.
This history might be a reason why Donald Trump started together with Mark Burnett the TV reality show 'The Apprentice" in 2004 where one successful candidate gets the chance to work for the Trump Organization and learn from the 'the master' of the business as an 'apprentice'.
Ambitious Donald Trump moved from Brooklyn to Manhattan in 1971. In 1982 he built Trump Tower on 5th Ave which remains one his most typical buildings.
A new dimension of 21st century real estate development in New York can be found between 9th Street to 72nd Street on the Westside of Manhattan where he is building Trump Place, which is an estimated 5 billion dollar project that creates approx. 8,000+ residential units and about 5 million sq.ft. commercial space on the 100 acre piece of land overlooking the Hudson River.
Unquestioned he became the ultimate New York City real estate mogul and a celebrity of the city as well, but he has reached out to other business fields and places across the country.
Atlantic City is the domain of his 3 top-of-the-line Casino hotels 'The Trump Plaza Hotel and Casino', the 'Trump Marina Casino Resort', and 'The Trump Taj Mahal Casino Resort'. In Chicago, respectively just across the Indiana border in Buffington Harbor, he is operating a Casino Riverboat and in downtown Chicago he is building Trump International Hotel and Tower. In Palm Beach, California, he is operating his first casino at the west coast and he aims at the gambling capital of the world, Las Vegas, as well: he's planning the highest and most luxurious hotel & casino in 'Sin City'.
His general strategy is to buy top-of-line land, often with run-down buildings without perspective on it, and turning it into high prestigious objects, no matter if residential buildings, commercial space, or hotels and casino objects.
The common aspect is that they top each other always regarding price, luxury, and signature.
Apart from the real estate business and his TV show he owns parts of three major pageants: Miss Universe, Miss USA, and Miss Teen USA.
The overall list of projects would fill pages and would be by far not a static list since Donald Trump can let go: he doesn't stick to objects but rather buys and sells whenever it seems lucrative.
His degree in economics probably paid off but it can be doubted that education is the ultimate secret behind this success story that made 'The Donald' an American icon during lifetime.
He had seen the dark side of business as well, even if only for a short period of time. Around 1990 he was close to file bankruptcy and his bank account showed 900 million in debt.
But instead of going under he must have convinced the banker and investor community to keep the faith in him and by that giving him the chance to start a comeback (he later wrote a book about it).
At the end of the century he finally had given an example of a reincarnation of business success. The amount on his bank account was pretty much the same but the leading sign had converted to a plus sign which made the significant difference.
He was married to Ivana Zelnickova Winklmayr from 1977 to 1990 and to Marla Maples from 1993 to 1999.
January 22nd, 2005, he married Slovenian model Melania Knauss.
In 1988 he wrote his first book: 'The Art of the Deal'. Others followed: 'Surviving at the Top' (written shortly before getting into a financial low), 'The Art of the Comeback' (written after the mentioned low), 'How to Get Rich'. Latter one is following his reality TV show 'The Apprentice'.