Sam Zell Net Worth

Read more about Sam Zell Biography

Sam is of Polish ancestry, as his parents are Polish immigrants who escaped their country just before Hitler`s occupation in 1939. Soon after the family arrived in the USA, they changed their last name from Zielonka to Zell. When he was twelve years old, the family moved to Highland Park, where he went to the Highland Park High School. Following matriculation, Sam enrolled at the University Of Michigan, from which he graduated with a BA in 1963. Three years later, he received the J.D degree from the University Of Michigan Law School. While still at the University, his career began, as he was the manager of a 15-unit apartment building, in exchange for a place to live. Little by little, he received more work from the owner of the building, and managed his other properties.

He was then joined by his college friend Robet H. Lurie, and the two negotiated a contract in Ann Arbor. Michigan with a large apartment development owner. In no time, the two were managing over 4,000 apartments, and owned well over 100 units. However, Sam sold his interest to Lurie, and went to Chicago.

Before deciding to venture into real estate full-time, Sam worked in a law firm, but only for one week. Alongside his colleague from the law firm, Sam began investing, and started the EGI. Two years later, his old college friend Robert joined him, and in no time, the two expanded the company, and considerably increased its value. Robert died in 1990, and Sam continued on his own; nowadays, EGI owns several other notable companies, such as the Equity Office Properties Trust, Equity Lifestyle, REIT, Equity Commonwealth and others. On his own, Sam has bought several smaller companies in different industries, which has also increased his net worth.

Regarding his personal life, Sam is married to Helen, however there are no details about their marriage. Sam also has two marriages behind him, and three children from those relationships.Sam has also used his money for philanthropy; donating to several causes and charity organization, mostly focused on education and arts. Some of the most notable donations include the ones to the University of Michigan, University of Pennsylvania Wharton School’s Zell/Lurie Real Estate Center, among others. He has also donated to Jewish educational facilities, including the American Jewish Committee and Bernard Zell Anshe Emet Day School which, thanks to Sam`s donations, has the name of his father.

Structural info

  • Full Name: Sam Zell
  • Net Worth: $4.9 Billion
  • Date Of Birth: September 27, 1941
  • Place Of Birth: Chicago, Illinois, United States
  • Profession: Financier, Investor, Businessperson, Entrepreneur, Real estate entrepreneur
  • Education: University of Michigan, University of Michigan Law School
  • Nationality: American
  • Spouse: Helen Zell
  • Children: Kellie Zell, JoAnn Zell, Matthew Zell
  • Parents: Berek Zielonka, Ruchla Zielonka
  • IMDB:


  • Chairman, “Equity Group Investments”.


Title Year Status Character
Sunday Morning Futures with Maria Bartiromo 2014-2015 TV Series Himself – Chairman, Equity Group Investments
Squawk Box 2014 TV Series Himself – Chairman, Equity Group Investments