In a joint statement Monday, the couple (Bill and Melinda) announced they’ve decided to end their marriage, saying, “Over the last 27 years, we have raised three incredible children and built a foundation that works all over the world to enable all people to lead healthy, productive lives.
They continue, “We continue to share a belief in that mission and will continue our work together at the foundation, but we no longer believe we can grow together as a couple in the next phase of our lives.”
TMZ reports that Bill and Melinda began dating in 1987 after meeting at a New York trade show, and she’d go on to work in marketing for Microsoft and be appointed as General Manager of Information Products in the early ’90s.
The couple wed on January 1, 1994, in Hawaii and Melinda left the company in 1996 to focus on starting their family.
Bill and Melinda have 3 adult children, Jennifer, Rory and Phoebe, and reside in their huge, earth-sheltered family mansion, dubbed Xanadu 2.0, overlooking Lake Washington in Medina, WA.
Along with being mega-rich, the duo is widely known for their philanthropic efforts ever since launching the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in 2000. It was estimated in 2014 that they had donated $28 billion to the foundation, a number that’s only skyrocketed in recent years.
For instance, the Gates Foundation made a contribution of $250 million in late 2020 to fight the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Gates’ net worth is estimated at more than $130 billion.