BY ROY ALBERT ANDRADE, K1LLER, Inc.
OMAHA, NEBRASKA - Warren Edward Buffett was born on August 30, 1930 in Omaha, Nebraska to Howard Buffett, a four-term Republican United States Representative, not to mention a stockbroker, and Leila Stahl Buffett, a committed christian, and mother of three; Dorris Buffett, Roberta Buffett, and one of the world's most influential investors in human evolution, Warren Buffett. Before reaching puberty, Warren stepped into business, purchasing Coca-Cola bottles from his grandfather's grocery store, and reselling them. Warren had an eye for numbers, and kicked it at his father's brokerage firm to learn the tricks of the trade. The 11-year-old poster child made his first investment in 1942, buying three shares of Cities Service Company, an oil and natural gas holding company, which Occidental Petroleum acquired on December 3, 1982.
Warren Buffett, Walt Disney, Wayne Gretzky, Bob Hope, Jackie Robinson, John Wayne, and Tom Cruise have one thing in common; they had paper routes, serving as paper boys. At 13 years of age, Buffett delivered the Washington newspaper, yielding $409.00 at the end of the year, not to mention $228.00 for the total amount of dividends, and interest he received from stock trading. In 1944, he filed his own income tax return, claiming $10.00 for a watch repair, an expense, and $35.00 as a miscellaneous deduction, for a bicycle. Mathematically, paying $7.00 in taxes on $592.50 of income.
Buffett bought a 40-acre farm in Nebraska while attending Woodrow Wilson High School in Washington D.C, and employed a Nebraskan farmer to till the land under a profit-sharing agreement. At 19 years of age, he graduated from the University of Nebraska with a Bachelor of Science degree in business administration, and applied to Harvard University, but was rejected. Eventually, he found himself at Columbia University, studying under his hero and mentor, Benjamin Graham, the author of The Intelligent Investor. Buffett received a sufficient education. As his license plate suggests, THRIFTY, he was destined to be a billionaire. As the face of American business, Buffett serves as the Chairman at Berkshire Hathaway Inc., a multinational conglomerate company, with Charles Thomas Munger (Charlie Munger), vice chairman and longtime friend.
As of this writing, Berkshire Hathaway Inc. has well over $86 billion dollars on its balance sheet, and a market capitalization of $212.19 billion dollars. Buffett has a net worth of $75.6 billion, and still manages to get out of bed every morning to head to his office in Omaha, Nebraska. If there is anything we can learn from Warren Buffett, it's probably, from his own words, "I say the luckiest person in the history of the world is a baby being born today in this country. I bought my first stock when I was 11 in April of 1942. The DOW was 100. If you haven’t looked it’s 20,000. Something good must have happened between then and it’s going to keep happening, folks."
Not only is Warren Buffett one of the greatest investors, and wealthiest persons in the world, but he is also one of the most generous. Some people may disagree, because the amount of money he has gifted in charitable donations is small compared to the size of his fortune. Yet, he remains to be one of America's most notable philanthropists, donating billions of dollars of Berkshire Hathaway, Inc. shares on an annual basis, and never appears to be disconcerted about giving back to the world that made him one the richest persons to walk our planet. In 2016, Warren donated nearly $2.14 billion to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and to the Susan Thompson Buffett Foundation.
Shawn W. Anderson