Doug Burgum – Net Worth, Bio, Family and more


Doug Burgum is an American entrepreneur, philanthropist, and politician of the Republican Party currently serving as the 33rd and the current Governor of North Dakota. He has held the office of Governor since 2016. He has formerly worked as head of business solutions for Microsoft. Burgum is the founder of a Fargo – based real estate development firm called Kilbourne Group as well as a co-founder of Arthur Ventures. 

Doug Burgum Personal info

Doug Burgum 1st wife

Karen Stoker, Burgum’s 1st wife

Burgum was born on 1st August 1956 and is 65 years of age. His parents are Katherine and Joseph Boyd Burgum. Burgum’s first wife was Karen Stoker whom he married in 1991 and divorced later in 2003. He has 3 children with Stoker. His current spouse is Kathryn Helgaas. They got married in 2016. Burgum currently resides in the new Governor’s mansion in North Dakota worth $5 million, along with his family. 

Doug Burgum Pres. wife

Doug Burgum with his current wife, Kathryn Helgaas

“It’s an honor to be the first governor, and for the first lady, to be the first in the residence, which is the ‘people’s house,’” Burgum told The Associated Press.

Early life and education of Doug Burgum

Burgum was born in Arthur, North Dakota where he spent his childhood with his parents and grandfather, who had founded a grain elevator in 1906. He attended Dakota High School and later earned his undergraduate degree from North Dakota State University in 1978. Burgum studied business at the Stanford, Graduate School of Business where he befriended Steve Ballmer the would-be CEO of Microsoft. 

Doug Burgum daughter

Doug Burgum with his daughter Brooke Burgum 

Burgum “spent the whole final quarter on a project team with Ballmer” during his last year at Stanford. He earned his MBA degree from Stanford in 1980 and later received an honorary doctorate in 2000 from North Dakota State and in 2006 from the University of Mary. 

Doug Burgum Career

Burgum started his career as a consultant for a Chicago – based company called McKinsey and Co. following his graduation from Stanford. Soon afterward, he joined a software company called Great Plains Software in 1983 after investing a seed capital of $250,000 and became president after buying the rest of the company with finances raised from his family in 1984. Burgum sold Great Plains Software to Microsoft in 2001 for $1.1 billion. 

Burgum was appointed as the head of business solutions for Microsoft after the sale and stayed with them until 2007. Satya Nadella, a current CEO of Microsoft, has credited Burgum with “inspiring him to find the soul of Microsoft”.

Doug Burgum

He has also served on the advisory board for the Stanford Graduate School of Business. Burgum ran for Governor of North Dakota as a Republican in 2016 with no formal political experience. He defeated Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem in the primary election and won the general election in November with 75% of the total vote. Burgum was re-elected in 2020 and has held office as the Governor of North Dakota to date.

Doug Burgum’s net worth

Doug Burgum’s net worth is approximately $1.5 billion. His stipulated annual salary as Governor of North Dakota is $135,360.  Doug established his billionaire status through a tech firm called Great Plains Software which he joined in 1983 and rose to the rank of president and finally sold it off to Microsoft in 2001 for $1.1 billion. 

Burgum has also founded a real estate development firm called the Kilbourne Group and is the co-founder of Arthur Ventures. Burgum has also invested in a number of promising firms including SuccessFactors, which sold to SAP for $3.4 billion in 2012. 

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Alex Jones

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  • You are the first guy to say “$1.5 B” for Gov. Burgums current networth. My guess is that you are closer to correct than the sources that say $1.1B. Having read that Doug Burgum was bought out for $1.1B by MicroSoft, then went on their payroll for half a dozen years, then invested in real estate, and is NOT known for wasting his money by trying to impress the people of North Dakota with his mansions, limos, private jets, and relationships with various models and actresses in the adult entertainment business.

    Gov. Burgum did one wild thing with his money. He paid 50,000 people $20 each, including me, to donate at least a dollar to his presidential campaign so that he could get on the debate stage with the other Republican candidates for president. That’s a $1M. That’s not a lot considering his networth, what he was trying to do, and that it worked.

    “Alex Jones”, it’s a good thing that you look like a regular guy in your photo, not like an ugly toad who goes by the same name, with a reputation for telling lies to get money, pretty close to the definition of fraud, and who appears on this site from time to time, when he’s not hiding his money from from his debtors and judges.

    Keep up the good work.

    • Hey Luther Berg,
      Thanks for sharing those insights! It’s fascinating to learn about Gov. Burgum’s unconventional use of his wealth, especially the grassroots approach for his presidential campaign. It’sThanks for sharing those insights! It’s fascinating to learn about Gov. Burgum’s unconventional use of his wealth, especially the grassroots approach for his presidential campaign. It’s always interesting to see public figures take unique paths. Keep the interesting info coming!