David Duffield‘s Net Worth

David Duffield

Age: 84 years old

Nationality: American Net Worth: $12.9 billion

Date of Birth: January 1, 1941

Source of Wealth: Entrepreneur

Gender: Male

Height:5’7” (1.71m)


David Duffield stands as an influential American billionaire within the software industry.

Renowned as the co-founder and former chairman of PeopleSoft, as well as the co-founder and chairman at Workday, Inc., his contributions have earned him a place on the Forbes World’s Richest People list.

Under Duffield’s guidance, PeopleSoft flourished into the world’s second-largest application software company, ultimately catching the attention of Oracle, which acquired it in January 2005.

As of January 2024, David Duffield’s substantial achievements are reflected in his estimated net worth of $12.9 Billion.

David Duffield’s Early Life

Born on September 21, 1940, in Cleveland, David Arthur Duffield is an accomplished individual with a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering and an MBA from Cornell University.

Notably, he is the benefactor behind Duffield Hall, showcasing his commitment to education.

Duffield’s upbringing unfolded in northern New Jersey, where he enjoyed the privilege of having exceptional parents and access to an excellent school system, contributing significantly to his foundation in education.

David Duffield’s Career

David Duffield, a visionary entrepreneur, established two prominent mainframe application software companies that played pivotal roles in the industry.

As the CEO, chairman, and chief product architect at Integral Systems, he led the way in offering cutting-edge DB2-based human resource and accounting systems.

Additionally, he co-founded Information Associates, specializing in applications tailored for the higher education market.

In 1987, Duffield founded PeopleSoft, a suite of applications that mid-sized to large companies incorporate as a workforce management solution, where he assumed roles as CEO and board chairman.

Under his leadership, PeopleSoft flourished into the world’s second-largest application software company before being acquired by Oracle in January 2005 for $10.7 billion.

Following this success, Duffield, alongside former PeopleSoft vice-chair Aneel Bhusri, ventured into a new chapter, founding Workday Inc. in March 2005.

Workday Inc. provides unified finance, human resources, and student/faculty lifecycle management cloud applications designed for the way people work in today’s organizations.

Headquartered in Pleasanton, California, Workday, Inc. witnessed substantial growth, employing approximately 1,000 people in 2011.

In this venture, Duffield and Bhusri took on the roles of co-CEOs, with Duffield also serving as the company’s chief customer advocate.

As of January 2024, David Duffield’s net worth stands at a remarkable $12.9 billion according to Forbes.

David Duffield’s Spending Habits

David Duffield’s financial allocation is primarily channeled into philanthropy, reflecting his commitment to making a positive impact.

With an estimated net worth of $12.9 billion, Duffield intends to dedicate the majority of his fortune to charitable causes.

Notably, David Duffield has contributed over $300 million to an animal foundation established in honor of his late miniature schnauzer.

Renowned for his philanthropic endeavors, Duffield has generously donated around $800 million to diverse causes, exemplifying his dedication to creating a meaningful and lasting influence through charitable initiatives.

David Duffield’s Personal Life

David Duffield and Cheryl have welcomed seven adopted children into their lives, and Duffield also has three children from a previous marriage. However, their journey together began with a shared love for pets.

Their first companions included a parakeet and the enduring Peanut, a 16-year-old parrot still residing with them. In the 1980s, the family expanded to include Maddie.

Their introduction to Maddie occurred when she was only a few days old. The couple made regular visits to the breeder’s kennel until Maddie was weaned and ready to join their home.

Maddie became an integral part of their lives until 1997 when she succumbed to cancer at the age of 10 and was gently put to rest.

David Duffield’s Philanthropy

David Duffield’s compassionate endeavors extend beyond the realm of technology, prominently manifesting in his notable philanthropic contributions, particularly in the realm of animal welfare.

Parallel to his illustrious career in technology, Duffield and his wife, Cheryl, embarked on a meaningful philanthropic journey in 1994.

They established Maddie’s Fund, initially named the Duffield Family Foundation, as a testament to their love for animals. Maddie’s Fund, named after their cherished Miniature Schnauzer, became a beacon of support for animal welfare initiatives.

The Duffields, deeply moved by their bond with Maddie, have endowed the fund with over $300 million and, through the fiscal year 2013-2014, spent more than $153 million to save the lives of countless dogs and cats.

Beyond the financial contributions, the Duffields have transcended traditional generosity, embodying a commitment to honor their beloved companion Maddie.

Their exceptional donation is recognized as one of the most substantial personal contributions to the animal welfare cause, showcasing their dedication.

In a further display of their commitment, the Duffields put their 21.48-acre estate in California on the market in May 2016.

Valued at $39 million, the proceeds from the sale were designated to support Maddie’s Fund, reinforcing the couple’s enduring legacy of compassion for animals.

Currently residing near Lake Tahoe, the Duffields continue to champion the cause that has become an integral part of their philanthropic identity.

David Duffield’s Career Highlights

David Duffield’s career is marked by noteworthy achievements, including being the co-founder and chairman of PeopleSoft and Workday Inc.

His impactful contributions to the software industry have garnered acclaim, further exemplified by his recognition as an EY Entrepreneur of the Year Award recipient in 2013.

In addition to being featured on the Forbes list, Duffield has garnered recognition through esteemed accolades.

The American Academy of Achievement bestowed upon him the Golden Plate Award, acknowledging his remarkable contributions to the realm of enterprise software.

Favorite Quotes from David Duffield

“With a private company, you’ve got to get into who’s investing and what’s the balance sheet like. I had come out of retirement into a very difficult situation with the PeopleSoft takeover, got through it, and was having a good time, frankly. We just ran out of runway at PeopleSoft.” – David Duffield

“Flame emails and offensive Internet activities are not classy. It doesn’t fit with our culture here, where we respect the gender, race, opinions, ear-lobe apparel, and choice of clothing of all employees.” – David Duffield

“I think I’ve done a good job in the industry from the standpoint of employee morale and customer satisfaction and as an innovative thinker in tech.” – David Duffield

“Very small town, where I could walk to school or the ball field. I had a typical middle-class upbringing and a bit of an entrepreneurial gene or two.” – David Duffield

“Exactly. Everybody has conflicts, and you don’t have an infinite number of days to schedule these things. So he figured out a way through the math to build a conflict-free exam schedule, which is the tricky part, doing it in the minimum number of periods necessary. Anybody could do it if you had infinite periods.” – David Duffield

“So our background was higher education, and exam scheduling created credibility. Then with this success with the University of Rochester payroll system, we had another product. So I responded to the RFP from Rutgers.” – David Duffield

3 Valuable Lessons from David Duffield and PeopleSoft

Now that we’ve delved into David Duffield’s accomplishments and the path to his success, let’s explore some of the most impactful lessons we can glean from his experiences:

1.   Prioritize Honesty and Integrity

Maintaining relationships, whether in family, business or with colleagues, hinges on the bedrock of honesty and personal integrity.

Trust and reliability are indispensable, and breaching these values erodes connections. Second chances are hard to come by once trust is broken.

2.   Foster Empathy and Kindness

Investing time in the lives of friends and coworkers, displaying genuine interest, and sharing mutual support cultivate strong bonds.

Acts of empathy and simple kindness contribute significantly to relationship-building, not to mention the inherent goodness of such gestures.

3.   Acknowledge the Importance of Everyone

Recognizing that each individual has their own set of challenges, responsibilities, and aspirations fosters a workplace culture that values the uniqueness and significance of each team member.

Whether it’s family, financial obligations, or personal dreams, understanding that everyone has a story makes each person’s role important in the collective journey.


David Duffield is an American billionaire businessman, renowned for co-founding PeopleSoft, a major application software company, and serves as its CEO. He also played a pivotal role in establishing Workday, Inc.

Duffield, valued at an estimated $12.9 billion by Forbes, is recognized for his philanthropy, particularly in supporting animal welfare through Maddie’s Fund.

His impressive career and contributions earned him accolades like the EY Entrepreneur of the Year Award in 2013 and the Golden Plate Award from the American Academy of Achievement.

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