John Fisher
Born
John Joseph Fisher

(1961-06-01) June 1, 1961 (age 62)
Alma materPrinceton University (BA)
Stanford University (MBA)
Known forOwner of the Oakland Athletics and San Jose Earthquakes
Political partyRepublican
SpouseLaura Meier Fisher
Parent(s)Donald Fisher
Doris F. Fisher
FamilyRobert J. Fisher (brother)
William S. Fisher (brother)

John Joseph Fisher (born June 1, 1961) is an American heir and businessman. He is the principal owner of the Oakland Athletics of Major League Baseball, the San Jose Earthquakes of Major League Soccer and the Texas Rattlers of the Professional Bull Riders organization. He is a former part-owner of the San Francisco Giants, having purchased a stake in the team in 1992 with his father as part of an investment group formed in an ultimately-successful effort to prevent the team from relocating to Tampa Bay, Florida.[1][2] He sold that stake away in order to complete a sale to buy the Athletics. He is the son of Gap Inc. founders Donald Fisher and Doris F. Fisher.

Early life and education

Fisher is the son of Doris Feigenbaum Fisher and Don Fisher, the co-founders of Gap, Inc., and inherited his fortune from them.[3][4] Fisher attended Phillips Exeter Academy[5] and Princeton University, where he received a bachelor's degree[3] in 1983.[5] After college, Fisher worked in the mailroom at the Republican National Committee and worked as a fundraiser for then-President Ronald Reagan and Vice President George H. W. Bush.[5] He then attended graduate school at Stanford University School of Business, where he earned a master's degree in Business Administration.[3]

Career

Oakland Athletics fans wearing fan-made green "SELL" t-shirts protest against Fisher's proposed relocation of the team to Las Vegas in the midst of a sparse crowd

After graduate school, he took a job for a real estate company that did business with his parents' company, the Gap. The business was not successful and he became president of Pisces Inc., the Fisher family's investment management company.[5]

In 1992, John purchased a stake in the San Francisco Giants with his father, as part of a locally-formed investment group's effort to prevent the franchise from relocating to the Tampa Bay area.[1] His father's memoir describes John as having been anxious about rumors in the early 1990s that the Giants could move to Florida. He told his father, "I think we ought to try to put a deal together to keep the Giants here. Warren Hellman's interested in it, and so is Walter Shorenstein. We should be interested." The investment group's effort was ultimately successful and the Giants stayed in San Francisco, opening a new bayfront ballpark in 2000 (now known as Oracle Park). Fisher retained a small ownership stake in the Giants "so he could continue to monitor its financials", according to his father, until 2005, when he was required to sell it upon becoming the owner of the Oakland Athletics.[2]

He established a relationship with Lewis Wolff to jointly purchase several Fairmont hotels in San Francisco, which led to his investment in the Oakland Athletics of Major League Baseball.[5] He also has stakes in the San Jose Earthquakes of Major League Soccer and Celtic F.C., which competes in the Scottish Premiership.[5]

Fisher has been the majority owner of the Athletics since he and Wolff closed on their joint purchase of the team in 2005 and is now also the managing general partner. In November 2016, Wolff sold his 10% share[6] in the Athletics to Fisher giving Fisher full ownership of the team.

In April 2022, Forbes estimated his net worth to be $2.4 billion.[3]

Oakland Athletics relocation to Las Vegas

See also: Oakland Athletics relocation to Las Vegas

Despite having the 8th best record in baseball since 2000, for over two decades the A's continuously finished at or near the bottom in all of MLB in home field attendance and local market TV ratings. So in April 2023, the Oakland Athletics announced a plan to build a new stadium on the Las Vegas Strip at the site of the former Wild Wild West Gambling Hall & Hotel casino near Interstate 15, near the T-Mobile Arena, while also ending negotiations with the City of Oakland.[7] After this, in a game against the Cincinnati Reds, a modest contingent of only 6,423 fans in attendance at a stadium with a 63,000 person capacity, protested the relocation by holding signs and chanting "Sell the team!" during the game. During the same game, Athletics first baseman Ryan Noda hit a home run to the right field bleachers.

Philanthropy

Fisher is a member of the board of directors for KIPP[8] and co-chair of the Charter School Growth Fund.

Political views

In 2019, it was revealed that Fisher, with his mother Doris F. Fisher and brothers William S. Fisher and Robert J. Fisher, had donated nearly $9 million to a political action committee that opposed Barack Obama in the 2012 election.[9] He has donated to Ohio rep. Mike Carey, a longtime coal lobbyist and supporter of President Donald J. Trump.[10] In 2023, it was revealed Fisher had endorsed fellow billionaire and Republican Party candidate Doug Burgum for the 2024 US presidential election, having donated the maximum legal amount to Burgum's campaign.[11][12]

Personal life

He is married to Laura Meier Fisher.[13][14] The couple lives in San Francisco. Fisher, who is Jewish,[15] has two brothers: Robert J. Fisher and William S. Fisher.

References

  1. ^ a b admin. "San Francisco Giants team ownership history – Society for American Baseball Research".
  2. ^ a b Wallack, Todd (March 31, 2005). "A's NEW ERA / JOHN FISHER / Son of Gap founder is the money..." SFGATE.
  3. ^ a b c d Forbes: The World's Billionaires - John Fisher April 2022
  4. ^ "John J Fisher, The World's Richest People - Forbes.com". images.forbes.com.
  5. ^ a b c d e f San Francisco Gate: "A's NEW ERA / JOHN FISHER / Son of Gap founder is the money behind the deal" by Todd Wallack March 31, 2005
  6. ^ Ozanian, Mike (November 18, 2016). "Fisher Family Buys Remaining Stake Of Oakland Athletics From Wolff". Forbes. Retrieved February 11, 2018.
  7. ^ "A's turned down $1 plot in resort corridor before settling on site for $1.5B Vegas stadium". The Nevada Independent. April 27, 2023. Retrieved May 26, 2023.
  8. ^ "Board of Directors". kipp.org. Retrieved September 15, 2023.
  9. ^ Tindera, Michela (October 26, 2019). "At Least 20 Billionaires Behind 'Dark Money' Group That Opposed Obama". Forbes. Retrieved October 30, 2019.
  10. ^ A 501tax-exempt; Street, charitable organization 1100 13th; NW; Washington, Suite 800; Dc 20005857-0044 (October 28, 2019). "GOP heavy hitters, Trump cabinet members revealed as donors to anti-Obama 'dark money' group". OpenSecrets News. Retrieved June 14, 2023.((cite web)): CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
  11. ^ Novak, Chris (July 17, 2023). "Athletics owner John Fisher endorses anti-transgender GOP presidential candidate". The Comeback.
  12. ^ Weisman, Jonathan; Corasaniti, Nick (June 7, 2023). "Doug Burgum, wealthy North Dakota governor, enters presidential race". The Boston Globe.
  13. ^ Princeton University news: "Fisher family funds dormitory for Princeton's Whitman College" by Ruth Stevens June 12, 2006
  14. ^ Stanford University Bulletin: "Laura Fisher" Archived July 6, 2013, at the Wayback Machine retrieved July 29, 2013
  15. ^ Palevsky, Stacey (October 1, 2009). "Gap Founder Donald Fisher Leaves Stamp on Community". J. The Jewish News of Northern California.