Anderson Cooper may be the great-great-great-grandson of shipping and railroad magnate Cornelius Vanderbilt, but the CNN anchor won’t be seeing any of his family’s fortune in the future.
“My mum’s made clear to me that there’s no trust fund. There’s none of that,” Cooper told Howard Stern Monday on his radio show.
Cooper’s mother is railroad heiress-turned-successful jeans designer Gloria Vanderbilt, who, at 90-years-old, is worth a reported $200 million.
But Cooper is ok with not receiving an inheritance, telling Stern, “I don’t believe in inheriting money. I think it’s an initiative sucker. I think it’s a curse.”
The 46-year-old TV personality continues, “Who has inherited a lot of money that has gone on to do things in their own life? From the time I was growing up, if I felt that there was some pot of gold waiting for me, I don’t know that I would have been so motivated.”
Not that Cooper needs the cash. “I’m doing fine on my own, I don’t need any,” he says.
Cooper makes a reported $11 million per year with his CNN contract, lives in a multi-million dollar converted firehouse in New York City’s Greenwich Village, and also has two Hamptons homes.
Despite his success and privileged upbringing, Cooper says growing up he always had a job and was oblivious to his family’s wealth — perhaps because only his mother came from money, but his father, Wyatt Emory Cooper, did not.
“I’ve never paid attention to it, honestly,” explains Cooper. “My dad grew up really poor in Mississippi — I paid attention to that because I thought that’s a healthier thing to pay attention to than like some statute of a great great great grandfather who has no connection to my life.”