“I think real success is being motivated by trying to create something … that really will make a difference and impact society.”
Scott Minerd was a highly accomplished figure in the financial world, serving as the global chief investment officer of Guggenheim Partners, a prominent Wall Street investment firm. Beyond his professional success, he was a respected financial commentator for major platforms like CNBC and Bloomberg Television. Notably, Minerd was also a dedicated philanthropist, contributing substantial sums to causes related to LGBTQ rights and other humanitarian endeavors.
Raised in the coal region of Pennsylvania in the small town of Chalkhill, just above the Mason Dixon Line, Minerd hailed from a modest background. His mother was a homemaker, and his father worked as an insurance agent.
Minerd earned his bachelor's degree in economics from the esteemed Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania in 1980. Becoming a certified public accountant (CPA), he embarked on his career as an accountant at PriceWaterhouse. After pursuing graduate studies at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, he transitioned to Wall Street, where his exceptional talents swiftly garnered recognition. From 1983 to 1996, he ascended to prominence at renowned firms including Merrill Lynch and Morgan Stanley.
By the age of 37, Minerd had amassed considerable wealth. He acquired a residence in Venice Beach, California, and temporarily retired to pursue bodybuilding. However, he soon grew restless and in 1998, he joined forces with successful financier Mark Walter to launch what would evolve into Guggenheim Partners. Minerd's expertise played a pivotal role in driving the firm's remarkable growth. He assumed the role of chief investment officer in 2005, a position he held until his passing.
A perceptive forecaster, Minerd was among the early voices to anticipate the global financial crisis in 2007 and the economic repercussions of the Covid-19 pandemic. He proactively adjusted his clients' portfolios to favor more secure investments. Regularly attending the Global Financial Forum in Davos, Switzerland, he also became a financial markets advisor to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, as well as a trusted analyst on television.
For Minerd, success transcended financial gains and traditional notions of masculinity. He devoted his time and resources to numerous charitable causes. Collaborating with SMUG International, an NGO supporting sexual minorities in Uganda, he played a pivotal role in creating housing for LGBTQ individuals in the region. He generously donated $27 million to the Union Rescue Mission in Los Angeles, aiding in the provision of sustenance for homeless families. Minerd also served on the board of the Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights organization, actively assisting asylum seekers. In addition, he established and funded his own organization dedicated to aiding immigrants and refugees. Alongside his husband, Eloy Mendez, he produced a documentary short titled "We Are Here," shedding light on the lives of four undocumented immigrants. The film premiered at the Sundance Film Festival.
Scott Minerd's passing occurred due to a heart attack in Vista, California, at the age of 63. His legacy endures through his substantial contributions to both the financial realm and humanitarian causes, leaving an indelible mark on the world.