Saturday, October 20, 2007

October's Man of the Year: Sir Richard Branson

"Rebel Billionaire" Sir Richard Charles Nicholas Branson was born in England in 1950 and is currently worth over seven billion USD.

Branson first made his money at the age of 16 when he published a magazine called "Student" which he then rolled over into a record album mailing service, which he rolled over into record stores, which rolled over into a music label, which rolled into an airline, which rolled into him actually buying The Virgin Islands.

Everything, strangely for Branson, involves virgins.

But fame and fortune didn't just fall into Branson's lap. The Billionaire Rebel had to overcome dyslexia, and soon after turning 16 he left his third private school for the last time, instead focusing on his entrepreneurial ventures.

Since then, Branson's worked with the likes of Bono, Bishop Desmond Tutu, Pope John Paul II, Nelson Mandela, and the United Nations for humanitarian initiatives. Branson recently donated a large sum of money to the "Find Maddy" fund, a fund built to help raise money to help locate the missing Madeline McCann, a toddler who went missing while her parents were on vacation in Spain.

With his entrepreneurial efforts, his philanthropy, you wouldn't think that Sir Richard Branson would have time to do anything else.

Well you're wrong. Very wrong.

Sir Richard Branson has set numerous world records for traveling great distances in record times. He first crossed the Atlantic Ocean (after one failed attempt) in 1986, and then, with other "rebel billionaires" set about to circumnavigate the Earth in a hot air balloon. Sir Richard has yet to complete that record, failing numerous times, but setting record paces along the way.

Branson has garnered much media attention, and is a beloved figure in his home of the United Kingdom as well as around the world. A fun loving spirit, he recently appeared on Comedy Central's "Colbert Report" with Stephen Colbert, to announce that he had named one of his new aircrafts after Colbert. The two then engaged in an on-air water fight much to the puzzlement of the audience and stage crew in attendance.

Sir Richard Branson is October's Man of the Year for his hard-working spirit, philanthropy, and sheer balls. In a world that seems to be flooded with pompous asshole rich people, Sir Richard is truly the rebel amongst billionaires.

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