Steve Forbes
Publishing executive, politician
Born: July 18, 1947, Morristown, New Jersey
Lives in: Bedminster, New Jersey
New Jersey Hall of Fame, Class of 2017: Enterprise

When Steve Forbes ran for the Republican presidential nomination in 2000, he used the slogan, “He Wants You to Win.” Forbes lost in the primaries, as he did in a prior presidential run in 1996, but in most other things in life, Forbes has been a clear winner.

Born Malcolm Stevenson Forbes, he is the son of Malcolm Forbes, longtime publisher of Forbes magazine, and grandson of Scottish immigrant B.C. Forbes, who founded the financial publication in 1917.

Steve Forbes attended Far Hills County Day School and Brooks School in Andover, Massachusetts, before enrolling in Princeton University, where he co-founded his first magazine, Business Today, which remains the world’s largest student-run magazine in terms of circulation.

After graduating from Princeton in 1970 with an A.B. degree in history, Forbes took a job as a researcher at Forbes magazine. In 1973, he began writing a column for the magazine and by 1980 was named president and chief operating office of Forbes Inc. After his father’s death in 1990, Forbes became CEO of Forbes Inc. and editor-in-chief of the magazine. Under his leadership, the magazine expanded into a host of other publishing ventures.

Forbes’ involvement in civic affairs began in 1985, when President Ronald Reagan appointed him to head the Board for International Broadcasting, overseeing Radio Liberty and Radio Free Europe; he was reappointed to the position by President George H.W. Bush. In 1993, with former Congressman Jack Kemp, Forbes formed Empower America, a group advocating supply-side financial policies as a means of stimulating economic growth.

In 1996, Forbes, a lifelong Republican, threw his hat into the ring for the GOP presidential nomination, calling for such conservative policies as a flat income tax and an end to affirmative action. The nomination went to Bob Dole, who ultimately lost the general election to Bill Clinton. Forbes again sought the nomination four years later, this time losing out to George W. Bush.

After dropping out of the 1996 presidential race, Forbes showed his good-humored side as host of an edition of “Saturday Night Live.” He remained serious about conservative politics, however, serving on the board of trustees of the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank; and on the board of directors of FreedomWorks, a nonprofit advocacy group  in Washington, D.C. During the 2008 presidential primaries, Forbes played a leading role in the campaign of Republican candidate and former mayor of New York City Rudy Giuliani.

Among his many accolades, Forbes holds honorary degrees from New York Institute of Technology and Lehigh University. He serves as an adviser at the Forbes School of Business & Technology, an online university.

Intro/Acceptance Video