There are so many rags to riches stories which can inspire us in these times of economic downfall and will goad us to struggle through difficult times. Here are the top ten rags to riches stories of all time.
1. Oprah Winfrey
Born to unwed parents in Mississippi, Oprah was brought up by her grandmother who was poor but she did teach Oprah how taught her to read. Academically she was strong and became a great television host. Today, she has her own channel and television show, as well as a magazine.
2. Andrew Carnegie
Andrew Carnegie was a poor boy from Scotland who became a great person during the industrial age. His family went through great financial crisis and Andrew worked as a telegraph messenger in America. He made investments in the railroad companies, and then proceeded to invest in the steel industry. Finally he started his own steel company.
3. Jim Carrey
Born in Ontario, Canada, Carrey wanted to become a comedian. His family went through troubled times financially. Eventually Jim decided to do what he loved doing most – being a comedian. He dropped out of high school and was able to get a part on a play called The Duck Factory. Today he is one of the most highly paid comedians.
4. H. Wayne Huizenga
Born in Chicago, Illinois, Wayne had a troubled childhood. Wayne went to high school and afterwards dropped out of college. He trained to be a part of the Army reserves. Subsequently he returned to Florida, bought a truck built a highly successful garbage business. He is well known for finding three Fortune 500 Companies.
5. Chris Gardner
Chris did not know who his real father was. He soon became a salesman of medical supplies and worked in that position for some time. Soon he took interest in stock broking. His son was a great motivation for him. After getting through the licensing exam, he received a job at Bear Sterns. In 1987, he started his own brokerage firm called Gardner Rich & Co.
6. Richard Branson
Branson was born in a nice family in Blackheath, London. He did not do well in school and started a mail order business at the age of 16. In 1972, he opened several shops to sell records, which he called Virgin Records. He created the Virgin Atlantic Airwaves and today he is one of the richest persons in the world.
7. J.K. Rowling
Born in Yate, Gloucestershire, England, Rowling had a penchant for writing imaginative stories from a young age. She moved Portugal in 1990 and started teaching English after her mother’s demise. She often thought of committing suicide as she was diagnosed with clinical depression. She was able to complete her first book by working at various cafés. Today, J.K. Rowling has been able to sell more than 400 million books and is worth about $1.1 billion.
8. Ozzy Osbourne
Osbourne was born in Birmingham, U.K. He could not do well in school because he had the problem of dyslexia. At 15, Ozzy discontinued school studies. Eventually, he joined as a singer of a local band, and people recognized his talent immediately. Gradually, he created his own band, Black Sabbath. He has till date produced 3 live albums, many singles and 9 studio albums to top charts.
9. Liz Murray
Murray was born in Bronx, New York. She was the daughter of HIV-infected poor parents Murray found herself living in extreme penury as a child. After her mother’s demise from AIDS, she was left alone at the age of 16. In spite of not having a great education, Murray was able to graduate in just 2 years and went to study at Harvard. Today, she is a great speaker who inspires people to strive hard and continue with their work no matter how great the hurdles.
10. John D. Rockefeller
Born in Richford, New York, Rockefeller was one among six children whose mom tried to bring up by way of her hard work. In 1859, Rockefeller along with a friend named Maurice B. Clark started a company and later built an oil refinery. Soon Rockefeller found the Standard Oil Company following which he became the world’s first billionaire.
List inspired by the list: Top 10 Rags to Riches Stories on Toptenz.net.