Haute 100: New York City

The most influential people in the world’s most powerful city

Loren & JR Ridinger
CATEGORY: Power Couples
COMPANY: Market America
INDUSTRY: Internet Commerce
What Makes Them HAUTE: Their online shopping site, Market America has generated more than $2.5 billion in accumulated retail sales. They continue to be ahead of the curve, launching programs like their MA CashBack program. The Ridingers most recently made headlines after they acquired shop.com, the Bill Gates-backed online comparison-shopping engine, whose strengths lie in strong technological advances that will seamlessly facilitate the shopping experience for the customer.

The Rockefeller Family
CATEGORY: Entrepreneurs
COMPANY: Standard Oil Company, JPMorgan Chase
What Makes Them HAUTE: This world-renowned industrial, banking, real estate, and political dynasty made the world’s largest private fortune in the oil business, primarily through the Standard Oil Company, powering America’s lamps and, eventually, their automobiles. Most noted for their philanthropic endeavors in education, health, and conservation, John D. Rockefeller reportedly gave away $540 million over his lifetime and became the greatest lay benefactor of medicine in history. Independent researchers have valued the assets of the Rockefeller family as high as $110 billion, though an exact figure is unknown. The family business headquarters is now located in New York City’s Rockefeller Plaza.

Alex Rodriguez
CATEGORY: Athletes
COMPANY: New York Yankees
What Makes Him HAUTE: He’s widely regarded as one of the best all-around baseball players of all time and has broken many MLB records including being the youngest player out of only seven others to reach 600 home runs, and the most home runs hit by a New York-born player. A-Rod’s not only the highest paid Yankee, he is also the highest paid professional baseball player in history.

Aby Rosen
CATEGORY: Originators
INDUSTRY: Real Estate
What Makes Him HAUTE: This real estate developer boasts a portfolio of some of New York’s most prized landmark boutique hotels. After years of co-ownership, Rosen recently became the sole owner of the properties that include the Seagram Building, Lever House, and the Gramercy Park Hotel. He currently has plans to develop the site at 610 Lexington Ave. into a glass hotel and condominium tower.

Stephen Ross
CATEGORY: Originators
COMPANY: Related Companies
INDUSTRY: Real Estate
What Makes Him HAUTE: He’s founder, chairman and CEO of The Related Companies, New York’s powerhouse real estate firm, responsible for trophy developments like Time Warner Center, the W Hotel Union Square, and One Union Square South luxury high-rise. Currently, Related is working on developing the new Moynihan Station, a major project to renovate Penn Station. Ross also owns 95 percent of the Miami Dolphins.

Wilbur Ross
CATEGORY: Billionaires
COMPANY: W.L. Ross & Co.
What Makes Him HAUTE: Ross launched the W.L. Ross & Co. investment fund with $440 million in capital and a small staff that he recruited from Rothschild. In July, Ross teamed up Edwin Crawford, the former Chairman of CVS, to create Crawford-Ross, a consulting and brokerage firm that that will buy and rebuild health care companies. His current net worth is estimated at $1.9 billion.

Billy Rudin
CATEGORY: Originators
COMPANY: Rudin Management Company
INDUSTRY: Real Estate
What Makes Him HAUTE: Rudin’s real estate holdings is one of the largest and most respected privately owned portfolios in the city, thus attracting some of New York’s most prestigious clients. As a fourth generation Rudin running the family business, Billy has singlehandedly helped lead the revitalization of downtown Manhattan and the birth of “Silicon Alley.”

Mark Sanchez
CATEGORY: Athletes
COMPANY: New York Jets
INDUSTRY: Football
What Makes Him HAUTE: The former USC Football MVP is now the Jets’ star quarterback. Sanchez was picked in the first round of the 2009 NFL draft, and the second quarterback overall to be selected, signing a five-year contract with New York. Though many were skeptical of his performance this season after his knee surgery, Sanchez has proven to be worth every penny of his $50 million contract.

Julian Schnabel
CATEGORY: Thinkers
What Makes Him HAUTE: The award-winning artist’s masterpieces can be found in museums all over the city, including the Met, MoMA, and the Whitney Museum. He’s also an accredited film director and recording artist. His newest film, Miral, is scheduled to be released in the U.S. this March.

Ian Schrager
CATEGORY: Originators
COMPANY: Ian Schrager Company
INDUSTRY: Hospitality
What Makes Him HAUTE: Schrager entered the hospitality industry back in the ‘70s as the co-owner and co-founder of the infamous Studio 54. He has since then helped to redefine the boutique hotel genre. He is responsible for New York’s landmark Gramercy Park Hotel and its neighboring residential space, 50 Gramercy Park North. Schrager recently partnered up with Marriott to form the Edition hotel brand, which opened its first property in Hawaii in October. He’s also recently launched Schrager Hotels, a hospitality company with plans to both build and renovate properties in several major global cities and is projecting to open 10 to 15 hotels in the next five years.

Stephen Schwarzman
CATEGORY: Billionaires
COMPANY: The Blackstone Group
What Makes Him HAUTE: He is the chairman and co-founder of the private equity and financial advisory firm, the Blackstone Group. In March 2008, Schwarzman donated $100 million to the New York City Library, which led to the main building being renamed in his honor. He is currently listed by Forbes as #171 in the world’s billionaires, with an estimated net worth at approximately $4.1 billion. This is a significant jump in rankings from the previous year’s rank #261.