The Inspiring Story and Net Worth of Chris Gardner: From Homelessness to Multi-Millionaire

Chris Gardner is a well-known American entrepreneur, investor, and motivational speaker. His journey from homelessness to multimillionaire has inspired millions around the world. He is best known for the movie “The Pursuit of Happyness,” which stars Will Smith, inspired by his story.

In this article, we will take a closer look at Chris Gardner’s life, including his early struggles, rise to success, and philanthropic efforts. We will also talk about the takeaways from his inspiring journey and give a rough estimate of Chris Gardner net worth.

Chris Gardner Profile’s Summary

Date of BirthFebruary 9, 1954
Place of BirthMilwaukee, Wisconsin, U.S.
OccupationBusinessman, motivational speaker
Famous forThe Pursuit of Happyness
No. of Children2
WifeSherry Dyson (1st wife died in 2000) & Jackie Medina (2nd wife)
Chris Gardner Biography

Early Life and Struggles of Chris Gardener

On February 9, 1954, Chris Gardner was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. He was Bettye Jean’s only son and the second kid she ever had. Ophelia, his older half-sister, is a child of an earlier marriage. Sharon and Kimberly, his junior sisters, are the children of his mother’s marriage with Freddie Triplett.

In his childhood, his stepfather used to abuse him both physically and emotionally. Gardner overcame these obstacles by cultivating a strong work ethic and an appetite for success. He attended local schools and ultimately graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a degree in biology.

After graduation, he relocated to San Francisco and started working as a medical research associate there. However, Gardner’s career in science was short-lived. He decided to seek a career in finance after discovering his passion for the field. He enrolled in the Dean Witter Reynolds training program, where he encountered many problems, including homelessness and financial difficulties.

The Pursuit of Happiness

Gardner’s inspiring journey became the subject of the movie “The Pursuit of Happyness.” The film, released in 2006, starred Will Smith as Gardner and his son Jaden Smith as his son Christopher Jr. The movie tells the story of Gardner’s struggles as a single father and his journey to becoming a successful stockbroker.

The movie was based on Gardner’s autobiography of the same name. However, the incidents that served as the movie’s inspiration were even more terrifying in real life. The movie’s success propelled Gardner into the public eye and helped him become a motivational speaker and author.

The Rise of Chris Gardner

Gardner started his own brokerage company, Gardner Rich & Co., in 1987 after finishing the Dean Witter Reynolds training course. The company provided services for institutional trading and research. Gardner quickly established a name for himself as a seasoned investor and a successful stockbroker.

Gardner has been involved in various lucrative businesses and investments in addition to his brokerage business. He has invested in businesses related to real estate, startups in technology, and other projects. He frequently contributes to CNBC and other financial news outlets as well.

Philanthropy and Giving Back

Giving back to his community has always been a priority for Chris Gardner. He established the Chris Gardner Foundation in 2012, which offers mentorship programs and scholarships to young people from low-income families. Hundreds of students wanted to pursue higher education with the foundation’s support.

Gardner is also active in several other philanthropic projects and endeavors. He has given millions of dollars to numerous charities and issues, such as homelessness, poverty, and education.

Chris Gardner Net Worth

Given that Chris Gardner keeps his financial details private, determining his net worth is challenging. However, some calculations estimate his net worth in the $70 million range. Gardner accumulated his wealth through his successful career in finance and his investments in various ventures.

Gardner’s net worth is low in comparison to other prosperous businesspeople. But he serves as an inspiration to millions of people all over the world because of his inspirational journey and dedication to give back.


Chris Gardner’s journey is a reminder that success is possible, even in the face of adversity. His story inspires us to persevere, work hard, and never abandon our dreams. Here are some final thoughts and lessons learned from Chris Gardner’s life story:

Hard work pays off: Success rarely comes easy. Chris Gardner’s story demonstrates the importance of perseverance and hard effort in accomplishing our objectives.

Believe in yourself: Chris never lost hope in himself despite his numerous challenges. He had faith in his potential and aspirations, which saw him through challenging times.

Help others: Chris Gardner’s success has allowed him to give back to his community. He believes in the power of helping others achieve their dreams and encourages us all to do the same.

Most Frequently Asked Questions

Q. What other books has Chris Gardner written?

Ans: In addition to “The Pursuit of Happyness,” Chris Gardner has written several other books, including “Start Where You Are: Life Lessons in Getting from Where You Are to Where You Want to Be,” “Family First: Your Step-by-Step Plan for Creating a Phenomenal Family,” and “Permission to Dream: My Journey to Becoming a Millionaire at 50… While Sleeping with My Eyes Open.”

Q. What is Chris Gardner doing now?

Ans: Chris Gardner continues to work as an entrepreneur, author, and motivational speaker. Chris Gardner is still active as a business owner, writer, and motivational speaker. He has devoted himself to helping others achieve their goals and overcome their own challenges, and he often speaks at conferences and events worldwide. Gardner is also quite interested in charitable activities, especially in education, employment development, and homelessness.

Q. Is Chris Gardner a billionaire?

Ans: No, Chris Gardner is not a billionaire. Despite having had great success as an investor and entrepreneur, his net worth is only thought to be around $70-80 million. However, Gardner’s money was not the key to his success; his tenacity, grit, and dedication to assisting others have earned him a reputation as an inspiration.

Q. What does Chris Gardner’s Son Do?

Ans: Christopher Jarrett Gardner Jr., better known as “Chris Jr.,” is Chris Gardner’s son who has chosen to follow in his father’s footsteps and work in the financial sector. He is a prominent stockbroker and financial counselor who has had positions at several famous companies, including Merrill Lynch and Bear Stearns. In addition to his work in finance, Chris Jr. is also actively involved in charitable endeavors and has lent support to groups that promote youth development and education.

Q. Who is Chris Gardner’s Wife?

Ans: Chris Gardner had two prior marriages. He had a son named Christopher Jarrett Gardner Jr. with Sherry Dyson, his first wife. In 1986, the couple got divorced. Jackie Medina, whom Gardner wed in 2006, is his second wife. The couple has a daughter named Jacintha Gardner.

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