Cooperman, of Short Hills, N.J., grew up in the South Bronx section of New York City. His father was a plumber. He was able to get an MBA and go to work for Goldman Sachs where he remained for a quarter of a century. Since his retirement from the Wall Street firm in 1991, he's been chairman and CEO of Omega Advisors, a $3.5 billion hedge fund based in New York City.
Victim of Bad Advice?
Cooperman says his story is the American dream. Now he wants now to donate most of his fortune to "those that are disadvantaged to experience the American dream." Cooperman follows in the footsteps Warren Buffett and Bill Gates. He was asked to donate half his fortune to the Gates foundation, but he says he'll donate every dollar he makes to the nonprofit sector, wanting to give back to the system.
While the 67-year-old now concedes that federal law specifically prohibits such deductions of nonpublicly traded securities to a private foundation, he filed a U.S. Tax Court lawsuit in July, blaming bad counsel from his tax advisers. This time his counsel better be accurate.