30 Inspiring Facts We Bet You Never Knew About Melinda Gates


Melinda Gates, the co-founder of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, has, along with her other half Bill Gates, made it their life's mission to eradicate global poverty. Here are some interesting facts about the American philanthropist:

  1. She along with her husband received the Award for Greatest Public Service Benefiting the Disadvantaged, given by Jefferson Awards in the year 2002.
  2. She has been ranked as one among the "100 Most Powerful Women" by the Forbes since the year 2011.
  3. She was awarded an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters by Duke University as a tribute for her philanthropic commitment in the year 2013.
  4. She chaired The Campaign for Children's, a $300 million comprehensive fundraising drive to expand facilities and grow the hospital's research program to find cures and treatments.
  5. She was listed at #12 in the list of 200 Most Influential Philanthropists and Social Entrepreneurs Worldwide by the UK-based company Richtopia in the year 2017.
  6. She was added to the list of "100 Tweeters of Social Good You Have to Follow in 2013" by Armchair Advocates.
  7. She was awarded an honorary doctorate in medicine from the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, Sweden in the year 2007.
  8. The Seattle Children's Hospital dedicated the Melinda French Gates Ambulatory Care building in honor of her work to improve the lives of children in May 2006.
  9. She was awarded the Insignia of the Order of the Aztec Eagle, while her husband Bill Gates was awarded the Placard of the same order, for their philanthropic work in November 2006.
  10. In recognition of their charity works and the impact on the world life, the Gates couple received the Spanish Prince of Asturias Award for International Cooperation on May 4, 2006.
  11. Melinda Ann French was born on August 15, 1964 to Raymond Joseph French Jr and Elaine Agnes Amerland in Dallas, Texas.
  12. Her father was an aerospace engineer, while her mother was a homemaker. Gates has an older sister and two younger brothers.
  13. She went to St. Monica Catholic School, from where she graduated as the top student in her class year.
  14. In the year 1982, she graduated as valedictorian from Ursuline Academy of Dallas, and went on to study a bachelor's degree in computer science and economics from Duke University.
  15. She earned her MBA from Duke's Fuqua School of Business in the year 1987. During her time at Duke, she was a member of the Kappa Alpha Theta sorority, Beta Rho Chapter.
  16. Following her graduation from Duke, she started her career with Microsoft. After a few months, she met the CEO Bill Gates at a PC trade show in Manhattan and went on to date him for six years.
  17. During her time at Microsoft, she participated in the developments of Microsoft's multimedia products such as Publisher, Microsoft Bob, Encarta, and Expedia.
  18. She with her husband Bill Gates, alongside Paul David Hewson, known by the name Bono, were named by the Time magazine as the Persons of the Year in December 2005.
  19. Gates donated over $10 million to her high school, Ursuline Academy of Dallas. She is also one among the major donors of the school's Facing the Future Campaign, and was honored on May 7, 2010 in their dedication ceremony.
  20. She and Bill Gates were honored with the France's highest national award, the Legion of Honour, by the President François Hollande for their charity efforts in the year 2017.
  21. She along with her husband Bill Gates founded the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF), in the year 2000, previously known by the name "William H. Gates Foundation." It is said to be the largest private foundation in the United States, holding $50.7 billion in assets.
  22. The Gates couple was honored by the President Barack Obama with the Presidential Medal of Freedom for their philanthropic efforts in the year 2016.
  23. She announced in September 2016 about her desire to begin working on the lack of women in technology and even spoke about it as one of the speakers at the Grace Hopper Celebration on October 4, 2017.
  24. She is one of the board of directors of the Washington Post company and also attends Bilderberg Group conferences.
  25. Melinda along with Bill Gates were awarded honorary degrees from the University of Cambridge, in recognition of their Gates Cambridge Trust, set up in the year 2000, which funds postgraduate scholars from outside the UK to study at the University.
  26. She married Bill Gates in the year 1994, in a private ceremony held in Lanai, Hawaii. The family resides in an estate on the shore of Lake Washington near Seattle.
  27. She left her job as General Manager of Information Products, to focus on raising their family. The couple have three children - two daughters Jennifer Katharine Gates and Phoebe Adele Gates and a son Rory John Gates.
  28. She along with her husband Bill Gates was jointly awarded the India's third-highest civilian honor, Padma Bhushan, in recognition of their foundation's philanthropic activities in India in the year 2015.
  29. She was on the board of directors of, an internet retailer in health and beauty care products, till August 2006. She actually retired to spend more time for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
  30. She was awarded the Otto Hahn Peace Medal 2016 of the United Nations Association of Germany (DGVN) Berlin-Brandenburg, "for outstanding services to peace and international understanding" in the historic Berlin Town Hall in the year 2017.
  31. Melinda Gates Net Worth: $70 Billion

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Melinda Gates, bill gates, Bill & Melinda Foundation

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