Oprah No Longer on Area's Richest List

By Erica Demarest on March 4, 2013 11:59am | Updated on March 4, 2013 1:35pm

CHICAGO — Yet another bit of evidence that Chicago can no longer claim Oprah as one of its own.

Though she still reportedly owns what is described as a “massive duplex” in Streeterville, the new Forbes list of the world’s billionaires has removed her from her usual place as a Chicagoan and now calls her a Californian.

But her change in address hasn't stopped her from remaining super rich, even more so than she was in last year's Forbes ranking.

Forbes lists her as 503th richest person in the world, with a net worth of $2.8 billion, up from $2.7 billion in the 2012 tally.

“The talk show queen spent much of 2012 splitting time between Montecito, Calif., her new home base since she left Chicago, and New Orleans, where she shot a film called ‘The Butler' opposite Forest Whitaker, due out this year,” Forbes says.

Her $50 million California compound reportedly features a 23,000-square-foot Georgian-style mansion on more than 40 acres, with a tea house, some 600 rose bushes — and an upscale outhouse.

Even without Oprah, there are still plenty of local billionaires, though.

Illinois has 17 billionaires on the list, led by Ken Griffin, founder of the Chicago-based hedge fund Citadel. He is ranked 316th on the world tally.

The rest of Illinois’ richest include:

• Sam Zell, principal of the real estate investment trust Equity Residential, at $4 billion (ranked 329).

• J. Christopher Reyes, runs the global food and beer distributor Reyes Holdings with brother Jude (below), at $3.3 billion (412).

• Jude Reyes, whose company Martin-Brower outfits McDonald's with fries, at $3.3 billion (412).

• J.B. Pritzker, heir to the Hyatt fortune, at $3 billion (458).

• Ty Warner, inventor of Beanie Babies, at $2.5 billion (589).

• Thomas Pritzker, chairman of Hyatt Hotels, at $2.3 billion (641).

• Neil Bluhm, casino magnate, at $2.2 billion (670).

• Joe Mansueto, chairman and CEO of Morningstar, at $1.9 billion (792).

• Jean (Gigi) Pritzker, who owns Odd Lot Entertainment, at $1.9 billion (792).

• Penny Pritzker, the Hyatt heiress who raised funds for President Barack Obama, at $1.85 billion (825).

• James Pritzker, CEO of the private wealth management firm Tawani Enterprises, at $1.5 billion (974).

• Patrick Ryan, chairman and CEO of the insurance brokerage firm Ryan Specialty Group who headed Chicago's Olympic effort, at $1.25 billion (1,161).

• Michael Krasny, president of Sawdust Investment Management Corp., at $1.1 billion (1,268).

• Eric Lefkofsky, Groupon’s chairman, at $1.1 billion (1,268).

• Nicholas Pritzker, II., of Hyatt hotel fame, at $1.1 billion (1,268).

•David William Grainger, largest individual stockholder of W.W. Grainger, at $1 billion (1,342).

Overall, the three richest people in the world are:

• Carlos Slim Helu, the Mexican telecom giant, who once again tops the list with $73 billion.

• Bill Gates, of Microsoft fame, with $67 billion.

• Amancio Ortega from the Spanish retailer Zara, who joins the top 3 for the first time this year with $57 billion.

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