Alida Rockefeller Messinger

Alida Rockefeller Messinger (born 1948) is an American philanthropist who is an heir to the Rockefeller family fortune.[1]

Alida Rockefeller Messinger
Alida Ferry Rockefeller

1948 (age 75–76)
New York, U.S.
Political partyDemocratic
(m. 1978; div. 1986)
  • William Messinger
Parent(s)John D. Rockefeller III
Blanchette Ferry Hooker
RelativesSee Rockefeller family

A donor to Democratic candidates and environmentalist causes, she is the former of wife of Minnesota governor and U.S. Senator Mark Dayton.[2] Messinger is also a sister of ex-West Virginia governor and U.S. Senator Jay Rockefeller. She has notably been a major donor to progressive political causes in her home state of Minnesota.[3]

Outside of activism, she is a former trustee of the Rockefeller Family Fund, a public charity started by her father and his siblings. Her great-grandfather is John D. Rockefeller, the founder of the Standard Oil Company and widely considered to be the wealthiest American of all time and the richest person in modern history.[4]

Early life and family edit

Messinger was born in 1948. She is the youngest daughter of John Davison Rockefeller III (1906–78) and Blanchette Ferry Hooker (1909–92),[5] and a fourth-generation member of the Rockefeller family. Her brother is former Senator John Davison "Jay" Rockefeller IV (born 1937).[6]

Messinger's father began to teach her about philanthropy when she was five years old.[7] She has said, "My father and mother's greatest fear was that their four children might take their wealth for granted and grow up spoiled and arrogant ... They wanted us to learn early that with wealth comes responsibility."[7]

Philanthropy edit

Messinger is a major donor to conservation[8] and environmental organizations. Her Alida R. Messinger Charitable Trust also funds conservation and environmental groups, as does the Rockefeller Family Fund, founded in 1967, of which she is a trustee.

Messinger also contributes financially to the Center for Public Integrity.[6] She is a significant political donor to progressive and Democratic causes, donating millions of dollars.[9][3]

Personal life edit

From 1978 to 1986, she was married to Mark Dayton (b. 1947), the son of Bruce Dayton, who was part of a family that started the retail store that eventually became Target. Dayton later served as a United States senator for Minnesota from 2001 until 2007 and as Governor of Minnesota from 2011 to 2019. Before divorcing in 1986, Messinger and Dayton had two sons together, Eric and Andrew Dayton.[10]

After the divorce, she married William Messinger, president of Aureus, an addiction recovery organization.[6] They have one daughter.

See also edit

References edit

  1. ^ Todd, Richard (1976-04-01). "The Rich Get Rich, but They Also Get Children". The Atlantic. Retrieved 2023-04-21.
  2. ^ Helgeson, Baird (October 23, 2011). "Heir adds a voice to her millions". Star Tribune. Retrieved 2023-04-21.
  3. ^ a b Kroll, Andy (2014-08-28). "Meet the Billionaires Backing Team Blue With a Megaphone Only Money Can Buy". The American Prospect. Retrieved 2023-04-21.
  4. ^ "John D. Rockefeller: The Richest Man in the World - Case - Faculty & Research - Harvard Business School". Retrieved 2023-04-21.
  5. ^ Teltsch, Kathleen (1 December 1992). "Blanchette Rockefeller, 83, Philanthropist, Dies". The New York Times. Retrieved 6 December 2017.
  6. ^ a b c Kimball, Joe (October 24, 2011). "Alida Messinger, Gov. Dayton's ex-wife and Rockefeller heir, to play more public political role". MinnPost. Retrieved 6 December 2017.
  7. ^ a b "Philanthropy for the 21st Century". The New York Times. November 5, 1989. Retrieved 2010-01-11. ... Alida Rockefeller Messinger, 40, says she was only 5 years old ...
  8. ^ Will Evans (September 9, 2008). "Profile: League of Conservation Voters". NPR. Retrieved 2010-01-11. Funders: In 2008, League of Conservation Voters' non-federal 527 received $275,000 from Alida Messinger;
  9. ^ Dotty Lynch And Steve Chaggaris (July 23, 2004). "Washington Wrap". CBS News. Retrieved 2010-01-11. .....the following contributors have donated $1 million dollars of more to various democratic-leaning 527s..... Alida R. Messinger, trustee for the Rockefeller Family Fund, has contributed $1,177,000 this election cycle.
  10. ^ Richert, Catharine (June 19, 2012). "Marriage amendment opponents raise $3.1 million since January". Capitol View. Retrieved 6 December 2017.