Last Updated: May 15, 2024
Richest PoliticiansDemocrats
Net Worth:
$750 Million
Oct 5, 1938 (85 years old)
Philanthropist, Businessperson
United States of America
💰 Compare Teresa Heinz Kerry's Net Worth

What Is Teresa Heinz Kerry's Net Worth?

Teresa Heinz Kerry is a Portuguese-American philanthropist, heiress, and businesswoman who has a net worth of $750 million. Teresa Heinz Kerry earned her net worth as the widow of John Heinz, a primary heir to the H.J. Heinz company. John Heinz died in a 1991 plane crash. Teresa is also a successful businesswoman in her own right. Heinz became well known for being married to longtime U.S. Senator and 2004 presidential nominee John Kerry. They married in 1995. She is the Chair of Heinz Endowments and the Heinz Family Philanthropies.


Heinz and Kerry signed a prenup agreement and have kept their pre-marital assets separate. According to her 2003 financial disclosure, which was released during her husband's Presidential campaign, at that time, Teresa's net worth was $500 million. The report revealed that in addition to an ocean-front home on Nantucket, Heinz and Kerry owned a six-floor, $7 million townhouse in Boston's Beacon Hill neighborhood, a $5 million ski retreat in Idaho, a $4 million estate in Pennsylvania near their home base in Pittsburgh, and a $5 million home in Washington, D.C.'s Georgetown neighborhood.

Early Life

Teresa Heinz Kerry was born Maria Teresa Thierstein Simões-Ferreira on October 5, 1938, in Lourenco Marques in the East African colony of Portuguese Mozambique. Her parents were Jose Simoes-Ferreira Jr., a Portuguese oncologist and tropical disease specialist, and Irene Thierstein, a Portuguese and British national. Her paternal grandfather was the scion of a Swiss-Germany family living on the island of Malta. In 1960, Teresa earned a Bachelor's degree in Romance Languages and Literature from the University of Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, South Africa. In 1963, she graduated from the School of Translation and Interpretation at the University of Geneva and moved to the United States to work as an interpreter at the United Nations.

Marriages and Career

Teresa Heinz Kerry married U.S. Senator Henry John Heinz, an heir to the H.J. Heinz Company, in 1966 and became a naturalized citizen five years later. She became the chair of Heinz Endowments and The Heinz Family Philanthropies, distributing money to social and environmental causes. Through the Heinz endowments, she co-founded the Alliance of Healthy Home in 1990. The program advocates for children's health. That same year, Heinz met Senator John Kerry at an Earth Day rally. This was the only time the two had met before Senator Heinz died in a plane crash on April 4, 1991.

In 1992, Teresa Heinz met John Kerry again at an Earth Summit in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil. Heinz was then a member of a State Department delegation appointed by then-President George H.W. Bush. The two began dating in 1993 and were married in May 1995. She chose to remain a registered Republican until John Kerry's 2004 presidential bid and also kept the name Heinz, saying in a statement:

"My legal name is still Teresa Heinz. Teresa Heinz Kerry is my name… for politics. Just so people don't ask me questions about so and so is so and so's wife or this and that. Teresa Heinz is what I've been all my growing-up life, adult life, more than any other name. And it's the name of my boys, you know ?… So, that's my legal name and that's my office name, my Pittsburgh name."

Spencer Platt/Getty Images


In 1992, Heinz was a Delegate to the Earth Summit, representing Non-Governmental Organizations. In 1993, along with Kerry, she also co-founded Second Nature, which brings education sustainability to college campuses, and in 1995, she founded the Heinz Awards. The Heinz Awards included a category for Outstanding Contributions to the Environment. In 1995, Teresa wrote a forward for the book "Pensions in Crisis: Why the System is Failing America and How You Can Protect It." The book had support from the H. John Heinz III Foundation. Spurred by issues uncovered in the book, Heinz created the Women's Retirement Initiative. In 1996, the Heinz Foundations created WISER, the Women's Institute for a Secure Retirement.

Furthermore, Heinz Kerry put $20 million from Heinz endowments to develop the Heinz Center in 1995, an institution dedicated to improving scientific and economic issues. Since 1996, she has hosted an annual Women's Health and the Environment conference series. She also founded the Teresa Heinz Scholars for Environmental Research, which annually awards eight $10,000 awards for doctoral dissertation support and eight $5,000 awards for Masters' thesis support for research having "public policy relevance that increases society's understanding of environmental concerns and proposed solutions." She is also a board member of the Environmental Defense Fund. For her efforts, Heinz Kerry received the Albert Schweitzer Gold Medal for Humanitarian in 2003. That same year, she was named to PoliticsPA's list of Pennsylvania's Most Politically Powerful Women. Teresa Heinz has received numerous honorary doctoral degrees from institutions around the globe.

Personal Life

Teresa and Henry Heinz, who was commonly referred to as John Heinz, had three sons: Henry John Heinz IV (born in 1966), Andre Thiersten Heinz (born in 1969), and Christopher Heinz (born in 1973). John Heinz died in a plane crash in 1991.

It was revealed in December 2009 that Teresa was being treated for breast cancer. She indicated that she had undergone many lumpectomies and would be receiving targeted radiation therapy treatment. In 2013, she was taken via ambulance to Nantucket Cottage Hospital after showing signs of a seizure. Teresa was described as being in critical condition and was flown to Massachusetts General Hospital for further medical treatment and tests. Here, doctors were able to rule out a heart attack, brain tumor, stroke, and other triggers. She was released and recovered at home after outpatient treatment.

All net worths are calculated using data drawn from public sources. When provided, we also incorporate private tips and feedback received from the celebrities or their representatives. While we work diligently to ensure that our numbers are as accurate as possible, unless otherwise indicated they are only estimates. We welcome all corrections and feedback using the button below.
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