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Jerry Reinsdorf net worth, relationship with Michael Jordan & history as an owner


As the owner of two professional sports franchises, Jerry Reinsdorf’s net worth is of great interest to a lot of people, especially sports fans in Chicago.

Of course, Reinsdorf owns both the Chicago White Sox and the Chicago Bulls. That makes him one of the richest MLB owners and one of the richest NBA owners, not to mention a successful businessman.

Who is Jerry Reinsdorf?

Obviously, baseball fans are interested in the White Sox owner’s net worth while basketball fans might be curious to know the Chicago Bulls’ owner’s net worth.

But who is Reinsdorf outside of his money? Let’s go beyond Jerry Reinsdorf’s net worth and take a closer look at who he is as a person and businessman.

What is Jerry Reinsdorf’s net worth?

Before we go any further, let’s get the question of money out of the way. As of 2023, Jerry Reinsdorf’s net worth is estimated at $2.2 billion, which explains why he was able to purchase two sports franchises in one of the country’s biggest cities.

Does Jerry Reinsdorf have a wife and kids?

Reinsdorf married Martyl Riftkin in 1956. The couple was married for 65 years until Martyl passed away in 2021. The couple had four kids and eight grandchildren.

When did Jerry Reinsdorf buy the Bulls and White Sox?

The White Sox were the first sports franchise that Reinsorf purchased.

He and Eddie Einhorn, a classmate of his from law school, bought the team for $19 million. In 1985, Reinssdorf paid $9.2 million in order to buy controlling interest of the Bulls.

Have the Bulls and White Sox been successful under Jerry Reinsdorf?

In many ways, the Bulls and White Sox have both excelled under Reinsdorf. For starters, both are worth exponentially more than they were at the time Reinsdorf purchased them.

Of course, Reinsdorf was the owner of the Bulls when they won three straight NBA titles on two separate occasions during the 1990s. Granted, Reinsdorf had the fortune of buying the Bulls the year after they drafted Michael Jordan. He can’t exactly take credit for that, although he was around to reap the rewards.

As for the White Sox, they’ve had some ups and downs on the field during Reinsdorf’s time as the owner. However, they did lift the World Series trophy in 2005. On the other hand, 2005 was just one of four seasons that the White Sox have won the AL Central since the year 2000, so consistency has been an issue for the franchise during the 21st century.

Do Jerry Reinsdorf and Michael Jordan have a good relationship?

By all accounts, Jerry Reinsdorf and Michael Jordan had a healthy and professional relationship for most of Jordan’s career. Keep in mind that it was Reinsdorf and the White Sox that signed Jordan, offering him the chance to play baseball during his hiatus from basketball. 

However, as we know from the documentary The Last Dance, Reinsdorf and Jordan were at odds at the end of Jordan’s career. Jordan clearly blames Reinsdorf for breaking up the Bulls after the 1998 season, not allowing Jordan and his teammates the ability to stay together for another year and pursue a fourth straight championship.

In fairness, Reinsdorf made some good points about how difficult it would have been to keep the core of the team together and build another championship team. But Jordan wasn’t buying it, leading to a rift in their relationship.

Where did Jerry Reinsdorf grow up?

Despite being linked primarily to the city of Chicago, Reinsdorf was born and raised in Brooklyn. His parents had emigrated from Poland and settled in Brooklyn before he was born.

It was on the streets of Brooklyn that Reinsdorf developed his love for baseball while playing stickball. In fact, Reinsdorf was in the crowd at Ebbets Field on the day that Jackie Robinson broke the color barrier in baseball. 

What did Jerry Reinsdorf do before buying the Bulls and White Sox?

After high school, Reinsdorf got his undergraduate degree from George Washington University in Washington D.C. and then moved to the Chicago area to get his law degree from Northwestern University. After graduating from law school, his first job was in the Chicago office of the IRS.

Fittingly, the first case he took after law school involved Bill Veeck, who was the owner of the White Sox at the time. 

Ultimately, Reinsdorf’s expertise was in setting up tax shelters and real estate partnerships. That led Reinsdorf to become the co-founder of Balcor, which was a trailblazer when it comes to real estate partnerships. The company became a smashing success, helping Reinsdorf to make tens of millions of dollars before selling the company to the brokerage arm of American Express at a price of $102 million in 1982.

Is Jerry Reinsdorf a giving person?

During his time as the owner of the Bulls and White Sox, Reinsdorf has been criticized for not always spending freely to build the best team possible. However, many of the employees who work for those teams have praised Reinsdorf for his generosity.

For instance, when the Bulls made the NBA Finals during the 90s, he would pay for every full-time employee to travel to the team’s away games during the finals. He also sent former Bulls coach Doug Collins an engraved watch after every championship during the 90s for the role that he played in developing the team’s players and helping to build a winning culture in Chicago.

Is Jerry Reinsdorf a charitable person?

In addition to treating his employees with respect, Reinsdorf has also gained a reputation for being a charitable person.

He has been an active member and supporter of several charities, including the American Academy of Achievement, the Chicago Jewish Sporting Hall of Fame, the National Jewish Sporting Hall of Fame, the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, and the Trial Lawyers Club of Chicago. Reinsdorf has even won awards for his work with charities in the Chicago area.



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