Laurene Powell Jobs is much more than just Steve Jobs’ widow.

The 56-year-old billionaire is a formidable presence in the investing world, and will likely be one in the 2020 election too. Powell Jobs used the $27.5 billion fortune she inherited after the Apple cofounder’s death in 2011, to launch her own businesses and philanthropies.

Here’s a look at the life of the businesswoman and philanthropist.

Laurene Powell Jobs was born in West Milford, New Jersey, in 1963.

Foto: Princeton, New Jersey.sourceFotosForTheFuture / Shutterstock

Source: Vogue

Her father, a pilot, died in a plane collision when she was 3 years old, and her mother later remarried.

Foto: Laurene Powell Jobs.sourceSteve Jennings / Stringer / Getty Images

Source: Vogue

Powell Jobs double-majored in political science and economics at the University of Pennsylvania, later heading west to Stanford University for an MBA.

Foto: Stanford University.sourceShutterstock/MintImages

Source: New York Times, Stanford

After graduating from the University of Pennsylvania, she worked on Wall Street for Merrill Lynch and Goldman Sachs.

Foto: sourceReuters/ Lucas Jackson

Source: New York Times, Stanford

She enrolled in Stanford's Graduate School of Business in 1989.

Foto: The Knight Management Center at the Stanford Graduate School of Business.sourceSteve Castillo/Wikimedia Commons

Source: New York Times, Stanford

That's where she met Steve Jobs, her future husband.

Foto: sourceBen Margot/AP Images

Sources: New York Times, International Business Times

According to Walter Isaacson's biography of Jobs, Powell Jobs got dragged along to a campus event by a friend. It turned out to be a guest lecture by Jobs.

Foto: sourceLou Dematteis / Reuters

Source: "Steve Jobs"

"I knew that Steve Jobs was the speaker, but the face I thought of was that of Bill Gates," Powell Jobs told Isaacson. "I had them mixed up."

Foto: Bill Gates.sourceStevan Morgain/AP Images

Source: "Steve Jobs"

"This was 1989," Powell Jobs added. "He was working at NeXT, and he was not that big of a deal to me. I wasn't that enthused, but my friend was, so we went."

Foto: sourceAP Photo/Richard Drew

Source: "Steve Jobs"

The pair arrived late and were told they couldn't just sit in the aisle. Powell Jobs and her friend ended up sneaking into the reserved seats at the front of the hall.

Foto: Stanford University.sourceturtix/Shutterstock

Source: "Steve Jobs"

Jobs ended up sitting next to his future wife. "I looked to my right, and there was a beautiful girl there, so we started chatting while I was waiting to be introduced," Jobs said.

Foto: sourceRichard Drew/AP Images

Source: "Steve Jobs"

Powell Jobs joked that she was sitting up front because she'd won a raffle and the prize included a dinner with Jobs.

Foto: sourceEric Risberg/AP Images

Source: "Steve Jobs"

Jobs finished the lecture and chased after his future wife, who had already walked out of the hall.

Foto: sourceJulia Malakie/AP Images

Source: New York Times, International Business Times, "Steve Jobs"

He found Powell Jobs in the parking lot and asked her about the raffle. She agreed to go to dinner with him on that Saturday, and they exchanged numbers.

Foto: sourceAP Photo/AP Images

Source: "Steve Jobs"

Jobs prepared to leave for a work dinner, but returned to Powell Jobs. He asked if she'd like to go to dinner that night. She agreed, and they headed to a nearby restaurant called Saint Michael's Alley.

Foto: sourceYelp

Source: "Steve Jobs"

While Jobs' NeXT colleagues waited for their boss to show up, the tech founder and Powell Jobs spent four hours at the restaurant.

Source: "Steve Jobs"

The couple remained together after that night.

Foto: Laurene Powell Jobs and Steve Jobs.sourceAlexandra Wyman/Getty Images

Source: New York Times, International Business Times

They married in March 1991 at the Ahwahnee Hotel in Yosemite National Park.

Foto: The Ahwahnee Hotel in Yosemite National Park.sourcelittlenySTOCK /

Source: International Business Times, Vogue

The couple had three children: Reed, Erin, and Eve.

Foto: Eve Jobs.sourceJordan Strauss/AP Images

Source: International Business Times, Vogue

When Jobs died from cancer in 2011, his wife inherited his wealth, including stakes in Apple and The Walt Disney Company. The inheritance left Powell Jobs a billionaire.

Foto: Walt Disney World.sourceCharles W Luzier/Reuters

Source: Bloomberg

Her stake in Disney initially made her the company's largest individual shareholder, but she has reduced her ownership to 4%.

Foto: Walt Disney World.sourceAssociated Press

Source: Variety, Bloomberg Billionaires Index

Powell Jobs spends a lot of her fortune on philanthropy.

Foto: sourceJStone/Shutterstock

Source: New York Times

"In the broadest sense, we want to use our knowledge and our network and our relationships to try to effect the greatest amount of good," she told The New York Times in 2013.

Foto: sourceCarolyn Kaster/AP Images

Source: New York Times

In 1992, she founded a health-food truck called Terravera with fellow Stanford MBA grad John Mullane. The pair sold Basmati rice platters and burritos with black bean dressing to white-collar workers in office parks. "We just wanted to offer a convenient way for them to eat healthy food," Powell Jobs told the Chicago Tribune in 1992.

Foto: sourceNeilson Barnard/Getty Images

Source: Chicago Tribune

She later backed away from Terravera to focus on her volunteer work tutoring underprivileged students in East Palo Alto.

Foto: sourcePablo Martinez Monsivais / AP Images

Source: Vogue

In 1997, Powell Jobs founded College Track, a nonprofit organization that helps prepare low-income students for college through tutoring and mentoring.

Foto: College Track.sourceCollege Track/Facebook

Source: College Track

College Track now operates centers in three states and the District of Columbia.

Foto: College Track.sourceGlassdoor

Source: College Track

Powell Jobs founded Emerson Collective in 2004, a "social change organization" named after one of her favorite authors, Ralph Waldo Emerson.

Foto: Ralph Waldo Emerson.sourceOtto Herschan / Stringer / Getty Images

Source: Los Angeles Times, Motley Fool, Vogue

The Emerson Collective makes grants and investments that focus on immigration, social justice, and education.

Foto: Chairman and Global Director of TBWAWorldwide Lee Clow, Laurene Powell Jobs and actor Harrison Ford attend Conservation International's 17th Annual Los Angeles Dinner at Montage Beverly Hills on April 4, 2013 in Beverly Hills, California.sourceAlberto E. Rodriguez/WireImage/Getty Images

Source: Los Angeles Times, Motley Fool, Vogue

The Emerson Collective is a private company rather than a traditional nonprofit and has funded several startups. The Washington Post described it as a "kind of Justice League of practical progressives."

Foto: sourceWin McNamee / Getty Images

Source: Motley Fool, Washington Post

Emerson Collective projects include AltSchool, a venture-capital-backed school that aimed to transform education by personalizing student instruction with technology. AltSchool made disappointing revenues and handed over control of its four schools to another start-up in 2019.

Foto: A classroom in San Francisco's AltSchool.sourceMelia Robinson/Business Insider

Source: Forbes

In September 2015, Powell Jobs pledged $50 million via Emerson to fund a campaign called "XQ: The Super School Project."

Foto: Powell Jobs with XQ CEO Russlynn Ali.sourceGetty Images/Angela Weiss

Source: New York Times

That venture aims to transform education by revamping how high schools approach curriculum. Powell Jobs is the chairwoman of XQ's board of directors.

Foto: sourceRon Sachs-Pool/Getty Images

Source: New York Times

Powell Jobs has also served on the board of several other organizations, including Teach for America, Conservation International, and the New America Foundation.

Foto: Teach for America.sourceJ Pat Carter/AP

Source: Bloomberg

She's a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and Stanford University's board of trustees.

Foto: Stanford University.sourceJustin Sullivan/Getty

Source: Bloomberg

Along with Michael Bloomberg and Ray Dalio, Powell Jobs is a founding member of the Climate Leadership Council.

Foto: sourceLarry Downing/Reuters

Source: Climate Leadership Council

In addition to her work with various causes, Powell Jobs has a reputation as a major art collector.

Foto: sourceReuters/Gus Ruelas

Source: Art News

Powell Jobs collects contemporary art and she was named one of Art New's Top 200 Collectors in 2019.

Foto: sourceClaudio Divizia/Shutterstock

Source: Art News

She's also a big sports fan. She bought a 20% stake in the company that owns the NBA's Washington Wizards, the NHL's Washington Capitals, and Washington, D.C.'s Capital One Arena in October 2018.

Foto: The Washington Wizards.sourcePatrick Smith/Getty Images

Source: Washington Post

Powell Jobs and Emerson Collective partnered with writer Leon Wieseltier to form a new magazine called Idea. She scrapped the venture when Wieseltier's former colleagues at the New Republic came forward with allegations of sexual misconduct against him in October 2017.

Foto: sourceGUS RUELAS/Reuters

Source: CNN, The Wrap

In July 2017, Emerson Collective acquired a majority stake in The Atlantic.

Foto: A 1862 edition of The Atlantic.sourceThe Atlantic Monthly / Wikimedia Commons

Source: Forbes, Atlantic

Powell Jobs released a statement commending the magazine for its drive to "bring about equality for all people; to illuminate and defend the American idea; to celebrate American culture and literature; and to cover our marvelous, and sometimes messy, democratic experiment."

Foto: sourceStephen Lam/Reuters

Source: Forbes, Atlantic

Emerson has also waded into politics. The Collective purchased television ads attacking President Trump's decision to rescind DACA in 2017.

Foto: Immigration rights activists take part in a rally in front of the US Supreme Court in Washington, D.C., on November 12, 2019.sourceMANDEL NGAN/AFP via Getty Images

Source: Vox

Powell Jobs has also put millions of dollars into political campaigns. She backed Kamala Harris's presidential campaign before the California senator withdrew from the race in December.

Foto: Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., and Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J., left, pause as protesters disrupt the confirmation hearing of President Donald Trump's Supreme Court nominee, Brett Kavanaugh, on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Sept. 4, 2018.sourceScott Applewhite/AP

Source: Business Insider

Powell Jobs backed Secretary Hillary Clinton in 2016, donating $2 million to Clinton's Super PAC through Emerson Collective and hosting $200,000-a-plate fundraiser that raised over $4 million, CNN reported.

Foto: Laurene Powell Jobs with former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.sourceEvan Agostini/Invision/AP Images

Source: CNN

Powell Jobs is most passionate about education and immigration policy. She met with President Trump to discuss the topics in March 2017.

Foto: President Donald Trump speaks during an event to announce new guidance on constitutional prayer in public schools on January 16, 2020.sourceREUTERS/Tom Brenner

Source: CNN

Powell Jobs lives in a $16.5 million home in San Francisco that boasts six bedrooms, 6 1/2 bathrooms, and incredible views of the city.

Foto: San Francisco.sourceGetty Images

Source: Business Insider

Powell Jobs owns three other homes in the Bay Area, including this 5,768-square-foot house she shared with her late husband.

Foto: sourceDiana Walker / Contour by Getty Images

Source: Business Insider

She puts on elaborate Halloween shows in front of that house each year that attract as many as 3,000 people. In 2019, the event was called "Fog Town" and featured a jack-o'-lantern tower and professional lighting, actors, and special effects.

Foto: Powell Jobs' Palo-Alto, California home is seen between apple trees in September 2016.sourceXRISTOFOROV /

Source: Business Insider

Powell Jobs also spends some of her free time beekeeping.

Foto: sourceGetty

Source: Vogue

When she and her family are looking to get away, they sail off on the Venus. The yacht cost at least €100 million ($110 million) to build, and was commissioned by Jobs but completed after he died.

Foto: Mega yacht Venus, commissioned by the late Steve Jobs, docked in Mallorca in July 2018.sourceTodamo /

Source: Boat, Yachting, Feadship, Cult of Mac

The yacht has been spotted in Göcek, Turkey; Milos, Greece; and Brijuni, Croatia.

Foto: sourceJorge Franganillo/Wikimedia Commons

Source: Boat, Total Croatia News

Despite her luxurious lifestyle and widespread influence, Powell Jobs tries to keep a low profile.

Foto: Laurene Powell Jobs speaks onstage during The New York Times 2017 DealBook Conference at Jazz at Lincoln Center on November 9, 2017 in New York City.sourceMichael Cohen/Getty Images for The New York Times

Source: Washington Post

"I'm very aware of the fact that we're all just passing through here," Powell Jobs told The Washington Post. "I feel like I'm hitting my stride now ... It is my goal to effectively deploy resources. If there's nothing left when I die, that's just fine."

Foto: sourceJStone/Shutterstock

Source: Washington Post