Ken Griffin is an American hedge fund manager best known as the founder and CEO of Citadel, a global investment firm headquartered in Chicago, Illinois. Griffin’s firm currently manages $25 billion in investment capital making it one of the largest alternative investment management firms in the country.
Griffin was born in Daytona Beach, Florida and had the interest in investing at a very young age. Griffin attended Harvard University and began investing as a freshmen. During his sophomore year, Griffin started his own hedge fund with a focus on convertible bond arbitrage. Ken received $265,000 from friends and family to get it off the ground. The success he experienced allowed him to open a second fund and between the two he was managing over $1 million. Griffin would go on to graduate from Harvard with an economics degree. One year later, Citadel was founded with $4.6 million. By 1998, the firm had grown to over 100 employees and $1 billion in investment capital.
As a Harvard alumni, Griffin consistently gives back to the university. In 2014, Griffin made a $150 million donation to the financial aid department. At the time, it was the largest donation in the history of the University. His total donation giving has exceeded $500 million.