Jeff Bezos and MacKenzie Scott met in 1992, when they were both at the New York hedge fund D.E. Shaw, working out of adjoining offices, and then married a year later. In 1994, they quit their jobs and moved to Seattle to start Amazon (then conceived as an online bookseller) from the garage of their new home. “I picked books as the first, best product to sell online after making a list of, like, 20 different products,” Bezos told an interviewer in 1997. On the way to Washington, MacKenzie drove while Jeff worked on their business plan, tapping it out on his laptop. According to a 1999 Wired interview, MacKenzie negotiated Amazon’s first freight contracts, doing so while working out of a Starbucks café in a local Barnes & Noble.
Here is everything we know about MacKenzie Scott and her journey to becoming one of the world’s most notable philanthropists.
Scott, writing as MacKenzie Bezos, is the author of two well-regarded novels: The Testing of Luther Albright, which was named a Los Angeles Times “book of the year” in 2005, and Traps, published eight years later, which Kirkus Reviews called a “cleverly orchestrated, cool-toned” tale. In 2013, Scott told Vogue that it had taken 10 years and “a lot of tears” to finish her first novel. “Granted, she was doing other things during that time,” added her interviewer Rebecca Johnson, “moving cross-country, giving birth to four children (three boys and a girl, ranging in age from seven to twelve), helping her husband start a fledgling business called Amazon.com.”
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