Ethel Kennedy Net Worth: Her Legacy and Impact on Human Rights

May 27, 2024

Ethel Kennedy, widely recognized as an influential figure in American human rights advocacy, possesses a net worth of approximately $50 million. Born Ethel Skakel in Chicago in 1928, she grew up in a Catholic household and later moved to Greenwich, Connecticut. Ethel attended prestigious schools like Greenwich Academy and Manhattanville College, where she met Jean Kennedy, her future sister-in-law.

Life with Robert F. Kennedy

Marrying Senator Robert F. Kennedy in 1950, Ethel and Robert had 11 children together. Their life together was tragically cut short when Robert was assassinated in 1968. Despite these personal tragedies, Ethel dedicated herself to continuing her husband's legacy, especially through her political and humanitarian efforts.

"Ethel Kennedy 1" by John Mathew Smith & is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0. To view a copy of this license, visit

Founding the Robert F. Kennedy Center for Justice and Human Rights

In honor of her late husband, Ethel established the Robert F. Kennedy Center for Justice and Human Rights, which remains a prominent organization advocating for social justice and human rights. This impactful work has earned her numerous accolades, including the prestigious Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2014.

Awards and Recognition

Over the years, Ethel has received an array of honors that underscore her dedication to humanitarian causes. The Robert F. Kennedy Medal and the Presidential Medal of Freedom are among her most notable awards. Additionally, she was the focus of the 2012 HBO documentary titled "Ethel," which explored her life and contributions.

"Ethel Kennedy" by John Mathew Smith & is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0. To view a copy of this license, visit

Family and Tragedy

The Kennedy family's story is marked by significant achievements, as well as profound tragedies. Ethel and Robert's children have faced numerous challenges, including the premature deaths of two sons. Despite the hardships, many of their children have carried forward their parents' commitment to public service and social activism.

The Kennedy Estate and Financials

The Kennedy family has accumulated substantial wealth, estimated to be around $1.2 billion. One of their notable properties, Hickory Hill in McLean, Virginia, was sold for $8.25 million in 2009. Much of Ethel's net worth is derived from her inheritance, real estate investments, and her late husband's estate, which includes royalties from books and intellectual properties.

"Ethel Kennedy" by Macmancape is licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0. To view a copy of this license, visit
Highlights from Ethel Kennedy's Life and Contributions
Category Details
Name Ethel Skakel Kennedy
Born 1928, Chicago, Illinois
Net Worth Approximately $50 million
Marriage Married Robert F. Kennedy in 1950
Children 11
Major Tragedy Assassination of Robert F. Kennedy in 1968
Advocacy Established Robert F. Kennedy Center for Justice and Human Rights
Recognition Presidential Medal of Freedom (2014)
Notable Documentary HBO's "Ethel" (2012)
Family Wealth Estimated around $1.2 billion
Notable Property Hickory Hill, sold for $8.25 million in 2009
Additional Advocacy Environmental and human rights issues; supported Barack Obama in 2008

Ethel's Continued Advocacy

Beyond her financial and familial legacy, Ethel remains deeply involved in social causes. Her advocacy extends to environmental concerns and human rights, ensuring that her impact is felt well beyond her immediate circle. Notably, she publicly supported Barack Obama during the 2008 presidential primaries, demonstrating her continued engagement in the political realm.

Ethel Kennedy's life story is a compelling blend of personal dedication, resilience in the face of tragedy, and unwavering commitment to social justice. Her work has indelibly shaped the landscape of human rights advocacy in America, cementing her legacy as a formidable advocate for change.

JJ Sterling
As the co-founder of Urban Splatter and an architecture graduate from Chicago, I thrive on crafting a digital nexus where architectural innovation intersects with boundless digital opportunity. My academic roots in the Windy City's rich architectural tapestry inspire a unique vision for Urban Splatter's journey into the ever-evolving digital frontier of design. Join us as we navigate the exciting confluence of structure, style, and technology.

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