William Henry Gates III: October 28, 1955 in Seattle, Washington.
Bill and Melinda were married on January 1, 1994 on the Hawaiian island of Lanai. The island has no stoplights, has 47 miles of coastline, lots of white sand, and is only 18 miles long and 13 miles wide.
To insure their privacy for the day of their wedding, Bill rented every hotel room at the hotel (250 rooms) and chartered every helicopter close by.
Bill and Melinda's $1 million, 15-minute, seaside wedding ceremony took place on the 12th tee of the Manele Bay Hotel golf course. William J. Sullivan S.J., Seattle University Chancellor, was the presider of the wedding ceremony and Steve Balllmer was Bill's best man.
Bill wore black slacks and a white dinner jacket. Melinda wore a $10,000 wedding gown designed by Victoria Glenn of Seattle. The white dress was made out of silk-faced organza.
Wedding guests numbered approximately 130 and included Warren Buffet, Paul Allen, Craig McCaw, and Katharine Graham. Willie Nelson entertained the Bill and Melinda and their guests at the wedding reception.
Part of their honeymoon was spent at the Wakaya Club in Fiji.
Bill and Melinda are the parents of three children:
Jennifer Katharine Gates: Born in 1996.
Rory John Gates: Born in 1999.
Phoebe Adele Gates: Born in 2002.
Planning on leaving his children $10 million each, "Gates has always said that, like Carnegie, he will give away most of his fortune before he dies. He plans to make sure his children are well taken care of but doesn’t want to leave them the burden of tremendous wealth."
Occupations and Interests
Bill: Chairman of Microsoft, a software developer, and philanthropist. Bill is an avid reader, enjoys playing golf and bridge, and listening to Frank Sinatra music.
Melinda: Former marketing manager at Microsoft and an executive in charge of interactive content. She now works with Bill on the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
Melinda is Catholic. Bill's family was Congregationalist.
Medina, Washington: Bill and Melinda's $125 million, 40,000 square-foot mansion is an earth-sheltered home on Lake Washington with a view of the Olympic Mountains. The home, aside from all its technical aspects, has gardens, an art collection, an indoor pool, library, 30-car garage, trampoline room, reception hall, estuary, and a stocked trout stream.
Union, Washington: A vacation compound with four homes on the hood Canal's south shore. Nicknamed "Getaway."
Mustique Island: Bill and Melinda vacation on this exclusive island in the Grenadines.