Howard Schultz has been CEO and Chairman of Starbucks Corporation, with a net worth of $2.8 billion.
Schultz has been onForbes Lists as #887 in Billionaires (#306 in the United States), #288 in Forbes 400, and one of the Global Game Changers.
Schultz grew up in the Brooklyn Projects and was the first of his family to graduate from college, which he did from North Michigan University on a football scholarship.
In 1982, Schultz joined Starbucks as Director of Marketing. Then, after visiting Italy and taking note of the prevalence and success of coffee shops, tried to persuade the owners of Starbucks to offer espresso beverages in addition to their traditional whole bean coffee, teas and spices. The owners refused and Schultz left Starbucks in 1985.
In 1986, Schultz opened his own coffee bar business, Il Giornale, with help from Starbucks cofounders Jerry Baldwin and Gordon Bowker to raise the necessary funds. Two years later, Starbucks sold its retail unit to Schultz and Il Giornale for $3.8 million. Schultz renamed Il Giornale to Starbucks and rapidly expanded the company.
In 2000, Schultz stepped down as CEO of Starbucks to help the company expand internationally as Chief Global Strategist. He returned as CEO in 2008, but then transitioned to Executive Chairman in 2017.
Under Shultz’s leadership, Starbucks expanded from 11 stores to 28,000-plus stores across 77 countries.
On June 4, 2018, Schultz announced that he will be stepping down from all positions at Starbucks and is considering a campaign for President. He hopes to act on his concerns about income inequality.
Schultz and his wife are cofounders of the Schultz Family Foundation, which works to connect veterans and youth with job opportunities to heal rifts in American society.
Schultz believes that Starbucks’ responsibility is to stand for attracting and retaining great people within a value system where the company can do great things for its employees and the people they serve. He believes that private companies have the responsibility to step in to help communities and the world where government entities fall short in providing for their citizens.