Blackstone is a combination of its founders' names -- "Schwarz" means black in German and Yiddish, while "Peter" means stone in Greek.
His Schwarzman Scholars, inspired by the Rhodes Scholarships, sends students from around the world to a one-year master's program at China's Tsinghua University.
The son of a dry goods store owner, Stephen Schwarzman founded private equity firm Blackstone with fellow billionaire Peter Peterson in 1985.
Initially a boutique merger-and-acquisition advisory business, Blackstone grew into the world's largest buyout firm, with $991 billion in assets.
While Peter Peterson (d. 2018) retired shortly after Blackstone's 2007 IPO, Schwarzman still presides over the business as chairman and CEO.
Schwarzman got his start on Wall Street at Lehman Brothers; he writes in his 2019 memoir about mistakes by management at that firm.
He started his first business, a lawn-mowing operation, at age 14, employing his younger twin brothers to mow while he brought in the clients.
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