The billionaire real estate mogul aims to be the second president after Dwight Eisenhower to have never held prior elected office.
Donald John Trump was born on June 14, 1946, in Jamaica Estates, Queens, a neighborhood in New York City. He was the second of five children born to Fred and Mary Trump. (His siblings Maryanne, Elizabeth and Robert are still living. His older brother Fred Jr. died in 1981 from alcoholism, which is why Donald no longer drinks.) They lived in a Tudor Revival home near his school, the Kew-Forest School.
At age 13, Donald left the school and transferred to the New York Military Academy to finish eighth grade and high school. Donald had been acting up, and his father, Fred Fred Trump, hoped "the discipline of the school would channel his energy in a positive manner," according to . At the Cornwall-on-Hudson in New York, Donald played on the varsity baseball, football and soccer teams, bowling, and on the JV basketball and wrestling teams. He also attained the rank of captain during his senior year and won multiple honor awards.
After graduating from NYMA in 1964, Donald attended Fordham University in the Bronx for two years. He then transferred to the Wharton School of Finance and Commerce at the University of Pennsylvania. While in school, he also worked at his family's company, Elizabeth Trump & Son, which focused on middle-class rental housing in New York City. He graduated from Wharton in May 1968 with a bachelor's degree in economics.
Because of his real estate projects, Donald has said that when he graduated, he was worth about $200,000 (equivalent to $1,020,000 today).
In 1971, Trump moved to Manhattan to work for The Trump Organization, taking on larger construction projects in addition to the buildings they owned. Trump became president of the company in 1973 — overseeing the 14,000 apartments across three boroughs. One of his biggest successes was in 1978: The city selected his Midtown Manhattan site for the Jacob Javits Convention Center. He showed a model of the proposed convention center to Architects Jordan Gruzen (pictured, left) and Der Scutt.
Ivana Zelnícková was an Olympic skier and model from the Czech Republic. She married the real estate mogul in 1977 at the Marble Collegiate Church. She's been quoted as saying, "in 50 years Donald and I will be considered old money like the Vanderbilts."
The couple welcomed their first child, son Donald Jr., on December 31, 1977. That doesn't mean he started changing diapers: "No, I don't do that," Trump said on the Opie and Anthony show in 2005. "There's a lot of women out there that demand that the husband act like the wife and you know there's a lot of husbands that listen to that … I'm really like a great father but certain things you do and certain things you don't. It's just not for me."
On October 30, 1981, Ivana and Donald Trump welcomed daughter Ivanka. (In this photograph, he took her to a Maybelline bash at the Plaza Hotel in New York City on September 3, 1991.)
In 1981, Trump purchased and renovated what would become the Trump Plaza. Then in 1983, he opened Trump Tower, the $200 million apartment-retail complex on Fifth Avenue in New York City. The 58-story skyscraper features a grand atrium and a 60-foot-high waterfall.
On January 6, 1984, Ivana gave birth to their second son, Eric. Donald took Eric and Ivanka to a Police Athletic League softball game held at Yankee Stadium in 1991 (pictured).
By 1987, Donald Trump (pictured in his Trump Tower office overlooking NYC's Central Park) was a billionaire real estate developer and entrepreneur.
But Trump was surprisingly circumspect when it came to discussing his wealth. On Late Night with David Letterman on December 22, Trump repeatedly refused to disclose his net worth. "You won't put a figure on it?" the comedian repeatedly asked. "Never have, never would," Trump answered.
Trump released his first book, Art of the Deal, in 1987. The book reached No. 1 on the New York Times bestseller list — a position it held for 51 weeks.
Trump acquired the largest hotel-casino in the world, the Taj Mahal in Atlantic City, New Jersey, and relaunched it in 1990. At the April 5 opening, Michael Jackson and other celebrities came to celebrate the $1 billion Trump Taj Mahal Casino Resort. One year later, the venture would file for Chapter 11 after accumulating $3 billion in debt, Forbes reports.
By early 1990, Trump's marriage was on the rocks — in large part due to his affair with actress Marla Maples. He and Ivana divorced in 1991. She received a $25 million settlement in the split.
Marla Maples gave birth to their daughter Tiffany on October 13, 1993. (Tiffany recently graduated from the University of Pennsylvania with a degree is sociology.)
Two months after Tiffany's birth, Donald Trump and Marla Maples married in New York City on December 20. The bride, a former Inside Edition correspondent, wore a white silk Carolina Herrera gown. (The couple formally separated in May 1997, and their divorce was finalized in June 1999.)
On June 13, 1996, Donald Trump's family — Eric, Donald Jr., Tiffany, Ivanka and Marla — celebrated his 50th birthday at Trump Tower. Nearly 400 guests, including Tony Bennett, George Steinbrenner, Morgan Fairchild and Eartha Kit, attended the formal fete, . One highlight of the decor was a Marla Maples mermaid ice sculpture. At the time, Donald said the birthday didn't bother him: "It's got a lot of positives," he said. "You've got the experience factor now, and you also have the good health and strength. It's a powerful age."
In 1996, Trump purchased the Miss Universe Organization (which includes the Miss Universe, Miss USA and Miss Teen USA pageants). Trump said at the time, "Its' a very very great entertainment format. It gets very high ratings, it's doing very well and we'll make it even better." Here, he posed with Kimberly Ann Pressler, Miss USA 1999. In 2015, he bought out NBC's stake and sold his interests in the pageant to WME/IMG.
Separated from Marla since May 1997, Donald Trump met Melania Knauss at a party while he was on a date with another woman, . "He came to the party with a date!" she shared. "I had heard he was a ladies' man, and so I said, 'I'm not one of the ladies.' Later, she noted, he sent his date to the ladies' room so that he could get Melania's number. The couple attended a benefit in NYC that October (pictured).
Trump opened the $40 million Trump International Gold Course in West Palm Beach, Florida, in 1999. Eventually, he also opened courses in Miami and Aberdeen, Scotland (pictured).
On October 7, 1999, Donald Trump first expressed an interest in politics, announcing the formation of an exploratory committee about the Reform Party candidacy for the presidential race of 2000. He went on MSNBC's Hardball with Chris Matthews on November 18, 1999, to discuss his prospects (pictured). Trump withdrew after poor results in the California primary.
In 2003, Trump became the executive producer of NBC reality show The Apprentice. Known for his casual dismissal of the competitors fighting for a high-level management job at one of his enterprises, he filed a trademark application for the phrase, "You're fired." (Here, he and Melania attended the show's January 2004 premiere.) In 2007, Trump received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for his contribution to television. Because of his presidential run, the 2015-2016 season is hosted by Arnold Schwarzenegger.
After getting engaged in April 2004, Donald Trump and Melania Knauss married on January 22, 2005. They wed at Bethesda-by-the-Sea Episcopal Church, on the island of Palm Beach, Florida, followed by a reception at Trump's Mar-a-Lago estate. The featured a seven-tiered wedding cake covered with 3,000 icing roses and the celebration was attended by several celebrities — including Bill and Hillary Clinton!
Later that year, on November 12, 2005, his son Donald Trump Jr. married actress and model Vanessa Haydon at The Mar-a-Lago Club. The couple met at a fashion show in 2003 when Donald Trump introduced them. These days, Donald Jr. is the executive vice president of the Trump Organization.
In March 2006, Melania gave birth to their son, whom they named Barron William Trump. (Fun fact: Trump had previously used the pseudonym "John Baron" or "Barron" in business deals.) The boy joined his father January 16, 2007, when he received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame (pictured).
A lifelong WWE (World Wrestling Entertainment) fan, Trump has hosted multiple WrestleMania events in the Trump Plaza and appeared at WrestleMania shows. On April 1, 2007, he celebrated his victory with Bobby Lashley in the satirical "Hair vs. Hair" competition in Detroit, Michigan.
Trump celebrated the launch of his self-titled vodka line at a May 23 Maxim magazine Party. The liquor was sold until 2011, and one bottle retailed for $31.
In 2007, Donald Trump became a grandfather after the birth of Donald Jr. and Vanessa's daughter Kai. Since then, he's welcomed seven other grandkids: Donald Jr.'s brood includes Chloe (born 2014), Donald (born 2009), Tristan (born 2011) and Spencer (born 2012), and Ivanka has Arabella (born 2011), Joseph (born 2013) and Theodore (born March 27, 2016). He's pictured on June 24, 2016, with Kai at his Trump Turnberry Resort in Ayr, Scotland.
His family grew again: Ivanka Trump married Jared Kushner at Trump National Golf Club on October 25, 2009, in Bedminster, New Jersey. (The former model and founder of the fashion line Ivanka Trump Collection also serves as executive vice president of development and acquisitions at the Trump Organization.)