America’s elite live vastly different lives than the rest of us. Those at the top have incomes that are orders of magnitude higher than the average person. Even when we compare their individual wealth with that of households in the states in which they live, there’s no comparison.
So how did they get to where they are? Are they all self-made entrepreneurs, or were they just lucky? Do they hoard all that wealth, or do they give back?
Alabama: Garry Drummond
Net Worth: $980 Million
Source Of Wealth: coal
Residence: Birmingham, AL
Citizenship: United States
Marital Status: Married
Education: Bachelor of Arts / Science, University of Alabama
Eight decades ago, Garry Drummond’s father put up three mules as collateral on a $300 bank loan from a rural Alabama bank; those beasts were an active part of the business, hauling coal from mines to the farms and homesteads that became his customers. That Depression-era industriousness paid off handsomely. Garry started at the business in 1961, after a University of Alabama engineering degree, and became CEO in 1973, three years after the company got its big break: a deal to provide coal to Japanese steel companies. The Drummond Company today is a $3 billion-in-sales miner of coal used in electric and steel production. Its enviable reserves total more than 2 billion tons through its mines in Alabama and Colombia. An expansion has led it into real estate, and it now oversees four luxury planned communities in Alabama, Florida and California.