Ronald Lauder is the younger son of cosmetics queen Estee Lauder (who died in 2004). Ronald was born on February 26, 1944, in New York City. He went to the Bronx High School of Science and proceeded to get a bachelors degree in International Business from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. Ronald also studied at the University of Paris and obtained a Certificate in International Business from the University of Brussels.
In 1964, Ronald began working for the Estee Lauder Company. He currently serves as chairman of Clinique Laboratories which is a unit of publicly traded cosmetic conglomerate Estee Lauder. Ronald is wealthy and had done business ventures outside of Estee Lauder.
Ronald has just been as active in the political scene. He was the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for European and NATO policy at the Pentagon starting in 1984. Former President Ronald Reagan appointed him U.S. ambassador to Austria in 1986 and held that position until 1987.
He ran for mayor of New York City in 1989 and lost to Rudy Giuliani in the Republican primary. A Jew he is known for his close ties with Benjamin Netanyahu. In fact in 1998 he was asked by Netanyahu who was the Israeli Prime Minister to begin negotiations with Syrian head Hafez al-Asad on a peace deal.
Ronald spent $ 4 million of his own money on two referendums in 1993 and 1996 regarding term limits for the New York City Council. He has been very vocal in protecting the rights of Jews all over the world and is the President of the World Jewish Congress and in this capacity has met a number of important heads of states.
Ronald is a known patron of the arts and has a huge art collection said to be worth over $1 billion most of which he has donated to a private foundation. In 2006 he bought a painting by Gustav Klimt for $135 million which was the highest ever paid for a painting at that time.
In business, politics, and the arts Ronald has played the game at the highest level possible.