Jared Isaacman

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Jared Isaacman
Jared Isaacman (cropped).jpg
Isaacman in 2022
Born (1983-02-11) February 11, 1983 (age 39)[1]
TitleFounder, CEO, of Shift4 and Draken International
SpouseMonica Isaacman[2]
Space career
Commercial Astronaut
Crew Dragon Commander US - FAA Astronaut Wings version 2.png
Time in space
2d 23h 3m
Mission insignia
Inspiration4 icon Logo_of_Polaris_Dawn

Jared Isaacman (born February 11, 1983) is an American entrepreneur, pilot, philanthropist, and commercial astronaut.[3][4] He is the founder, CEO of Draken International, a private air force provider and Shift4 Payments, a payment processor.[5] As of September 2022, his estimated net worth is US$1.5 billion.[6]

Isaacman was the commander of Inspiration4, a private spaceflight using SpaceX's Crew Dragon Resilience, launched from Kennedy Space Center in Florida on September 16, 2021. The crew returned to Earth on September 18, 2021, after orbiting at 585 km (364 mi) in altitude. The mission was part of a fundraiser for St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, to which Isaacman pledged to donate $100 million.[7]

Isaacman will command the Polaris Dawn mission, the first private spaceflight in a series of missions named the Polaris Program. Isaacman is currently undergoing commercial astronaut training at SpaceX.[8]

Early life[edit]

Jared Isaacman was born on February 11, 1983 to Donald and Sandra Marie Isaacman. He is Jewish, although he has said he is not a religious person despite donating to synagogues.[9][10] He is a youngest child, and has three siblings: two brothers, Marc and Michael, and a sister, Tiffany.[11] While living in Westfield, New Jersey, he attended Wilson Elementary School. Around 1993, the Isaacman family moved from Westfield to the Liberty Corner section of Bernards Township. Isaacman attended William Annin Middle School (6–8th grade) from ages 11 to 13, where he met his future wife Monica. He attended Aviation Challenge in Huntsville, Alabama as a child, inspiring his love of aviation.

As a ninth grader and a freshman at Ridge High School in Bernards Township, New Jersey, Isaacman discovered that he and his best friend, Brendan Lauber, had a knack for fixing computers and started a computer repair business in his parents' basement called Deco Systems. He also worked at CompUSA in nearby Somerville, NJ.[12] He had begun working, doing computer technical service and repair, when he was 14.[13] Two years later, that work resulted in an offer of a full-time job from one of his clients, and he chose to drop out of high school to take the job, obtaining a GED along the way.[5]

Business career[edit]

In 1999, Isaacman founded a retail payment processing company named United Bank Card, which was later renamed Harbortouch, a point-of-sale payment company based in Pennsylvania. He was the founding CEO, and retained that role in 2015 with the company having "been profitable for over a decade [while processing] US$11 billion a year from 60,000 merchants, generating US$300 million in revenues."[13] By 2020, the company had been renamed Shift4 Payments, Isaacman remained CEO, and the company was processing US$200 billion in payments annually.[5]

In 2012, he co-founded Draken International, a Florida-based company that trains pilots for the United States Armed Forces. The company operates one of the world's largest fleets of privately owned fighter jets.[13][14]

Personal life[edit]

In 2004, Isaacman began taking flying lessons. In 2009, he set a world record for circumnavigating the globe.[13][15] He received a bachelor's degree in professional aeronautics from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in 2011. He is flight qualified in multiple military jet aircraft.[5] In his 20s, he flew in many airshows, but by his 30s, he had stopped flying as such.[14]

He is married and has two daughters.[16] Isaacman married Monica of New Jersey in 2011. She went to middle school with Jared, and later worked at UBC. Isaacman entered into a relationship with Monica in 2002. [17] Isaacman has been a resident of Washington Township, New Jersey.[18]

Personal endeavors[edit]

Air show pilot[edit]

While in his 20s, Isaacman performed in airshows with the Black Diamond Jet Team.[14][19]

World record flight[edit]

In 2008, he tried to set the world record for circumnavigating the globe in a light jet, falling just short, by traveling around the world in 83 hours, just beyond the existing record of 82 hours. The record attempt was a fundraising event for Make-A-Wish Foundation.[18]

In April 2009, he set a world record for circumnavigating the globe in a light jet, making the flight in 61:51:15, about 20 hours faster than the previous record of 82 hours. The world record attempt was made as a fundraising event for Make-A-Wish Foundation of New Jersey.[13][15] He flew a Cessna Citation CJ2 with two other crew members, skipping stops in India and Japan, where he encountered hours-long ground delays in his previous attempt in 2008.[18]


Inspiration4 launch carrying Jared Isaacman

In February 2021, Isaacman announced that he would serve as commander of Inspiration4, the first private human spaceflight in which none of the people aboard are from a government agency.[20] The mission, operated by SpaceX, on board an autonomous Crew Dragon spacecraft launched by a Falcon 9 launch vehicle.[20][21]

Isaacman received the call sign "Rook" during flight training.[22] He is featured on the cover of a Time magazine double issue with the rest of the crew of Inspiration4 in August 2021.[23] Inspiration4 launched on September 15, 2021 (UTC), achieved orbit and splashed down 3 days later.

During the Inspiration4 mission, Isaacman made history by making the first-known sports bet from space, placing two bets on NFL football with the BetMGM Sportsbook, while over Las Vegas.[24]

Isaacman will return to space on the upcoming Polaris Dawn mission, scheduled for launch no earlier than March 2023.[25][26]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Jared Isaacman bjtonline.com
  2. ^ "Allentown to orbit: Billionaire buys SpaceX flight, and there is a way to join him". February 2, 2021.
  3. ^ "FAA Commercial Human Spaceflight Recognition". Retrieved December 10, 2021.
  4. ^ "astronaut | Definition, Facts, & Training | Britannica". www.britannica.com. Retrieved November 16, 2021.
  5. ^ a b c d Tognini, Giacomo (October 7, 2020). "Meet The New Billionaire Who Dropped Out of High School and Flies Fighter Jets for Fun". Forbes. Retrieved February 1, 2021.
  6. ^ "Forbes profile: Jared Isaacman". Forbes. Retrieved September 12, 2022.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  7. ^ Sheetz, Michael (September 15, 2021). "SpaceX is set to launch four nonprofessional astronauts to orbit: Here's what you should know". CNBC. Retrieved September 17, 2021.
  8. ^ SpaceX is training astronauts for the world's first commercial spacewalk, retrieved June 18, 2022
  9. ^ Wattles, Jackie. "How to practice religion could be a big question for some space tourists". CNN. Retrieved September 21, 2021.
  10. ^ Fallon, Patrick T. /. "Rocket man: Jared Isaacman is leading the first trip to space without astronauts". The Forward. AFP. Retrieved September 21, 2021.
  11. ^ "Who Is Inspiration4's Jared Isaacman's Wife? Who Are His Parents?". The Cinemaholic. 2021.
  12. ^ "Billionaire journeys from Ridge High School to space", Bernardsville News, February 10, 2021. Accessed February 23, 2021. "When Jared Isaacman dropped out of Ridge High School more than 20 years ago to pursue a successful career in business, it seemed like the sky was the limit."
  13. ^ a b c d e Segran, Elizabeth (April 13, 2015). "Meet The Fighter-Jet-Flying 32-Year-Old On Top Of The Payments Industry". Fast Company. Retrieved August 23, 2020.
  14. ^ a b c Whitford, David (October 25, 2017). "This Founder Owns the World's Largest Private Fleet of Fighter Jets – and That's Just One of His Companies". Inc.com. Retrieved August 23, 2020.
  15. ^ a b "Warren County pilot back at Morristown Airport after breaking world flight record". New Jersey Local News. April 15, 2009. Retrieved August 23, 2020.
  16. ^ Rabie, Passant (February 5, 2021). "Who is Jared Issacman? 29 facts about the billionaire going to orbit with SpaceX". Inverse. Bustle Digital Group. Retrieved March 23, 2021.
  17. ^ Natalia Romanova (September 8, 2021). "Meet Jared Isaacman's Wife Monica Isaacman AKA Monica Chacana – How Long Have They Been Married?". Blurred Reality.
  18. ^ a b c Sarah Schillaci (April 10, 2009). "Warren County man attempts flight around globe in record time". New Jersey Local News. Star Ledger.
  19. ^ Thomas Burghardt (February 1, 2021). "SpaceX announces Inspiration4, all-civilian space mission in support of St Jude's Hospital". NasaSpaceFlight.com.
  20. ^ a b Chang, Kenneth (February 1, 2021). "To Get on This SpaceX Flight, You Don't Have to Be Rich, Just Lucky". The New York Times. Archived from the original on February 1, 2021. Retrieved February 2, 2021.
  21. ^ Berger, Eric (February 1, 2021). "SpaceX announces first 'free flyer' human spaceflight". Ars Technica. Retrieved February 2, 2021.
  22. ^ Thompson, Amy (September 15, 2021). "Inspiration4's call signs: The crew of SpaceX's all-civilian mission have special nicknames". Space.com. Retrieved September 15, 2021.
  23. ^ Kluger, Jeffrey (August 23, 2021). "Inside Inspiration 4". Time. Retrieved September 15, 2021.
  24. ^ "Inspiration4 leader places first-ever sports bet from space". Fox Business. September 17, 2021. Retrieved September 17, 2021.
  25. ^ "Polaris Dawn". Polaris Program. Retrieved September 20, 2022.
  26. ^ Clark, Stephen (February 14, 2022). "Billionaire plans three more flights with SpaceX, culminating in Starship mission". Spaceflight Now. Retrieved February 14, 2022.

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