Wilbur L. Ross, Jr. is an American investor known for restructuring failed companies in industries such as steel, coal, telecommunications, foreign investment and textiles. He specializes in leveraged buyouts. In 2005, Forbes magazine listed Ross as one of the world's billionaires for the first time. He was ranked #346 the Forbes list of the 400 richest Americans, with an estimated net worth of $1.7B. According to a recent New York Times article, he has been bottom-fishing in mortgages and mortgage companies. He apparently commands far greater sums than his net worth would suggest.
Ross was born November 28, 1937 in Weehawken, New Jersey and grew up well-off in suburban New Jersey. His father was a lawyer and his mother a schoolteacher. He serves on the board of advisors of Yale School of Management. His second wife was former New York Lt. Governor Betsy McCaughey Ross, whom he divorced in 2000.
Ross commuted two hours a day from New Jersey to attend the Catholic Xavier High School in Manhattan. He ran track and was captain of the rifle team. He earned a B.A. from Yale College, which was also his father's alma mater. At Yale, Ross edited one of the literary magazines and worked at the radio station. Initially, he wanted to be a writer, but after his experience in a fiction class requiring "1000" words daily, he concluded that he had "run out of material." His faculty adviser at Yale helped him get his first summer job on Wall Street. Ross earned his M.B.A. at Harvard Business School.