Hugh Hefner – The Life and the Times of the Man who Played it Well!

Hugh Hefner was an American actor, publisher, and founder of the famous Playboy magazine. He was an advocate of freedom of expression and  liberal views as well as a philanthropist and political activist.

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Early Life and Education

Hugh Marston Hefner was born on 9th April 1926 in Chicago, Illinois, to teachers Glenn Lucius Hefner and Grace Caroline.

Hugh Hefner’s parents

Hugh went to the Sayre Elementary School and later attended Steinmetz College Prep. In 1944 he worked as writer for US Army and left the job after 2 years. Hefner then joined the University of Illinois located at Urbana–Champaign and graduated from there with a BA degree in psychology and a double minor in art and creative writing. After graduating from college, he took sociology graduate courses at Northwestern University, but later dropped out.

Hugh Hefner – Young Pictures


Hugh began his career working as a copywriter for the magazine Esquire. In 1952 he did not get a $5 raise and hence he left the job.

A year later, he took a bank loan and got money from investors, family, and other sources and launched the Playboy magazine. The first issue of the magazine was published in Dec 1953. It featured the 1949 nude photo shoot of Marilyn Monroe and sold more than 50,000 copies. In addition to managing the publishing group Playboy Enterprises, Hefner appeared in varied TV shows and even got a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for TV. He was also involved in production of the reality series ‘The Girls Next Door’ which ran from 2005 to 2009.

In 2012, Hugh stated that Cooper, his youngest son, will succeed him after his demise.

Hugh Hefner – Wives (Pictures)

with wife Mildred

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wife Kimberly Conrad

wife Crystal Harris

Hugh Hefner – Children (Pictures)

daughter Christie

sons Marston Glenn and Cooper Bradford

Personal Life

  • Hugh got married to Mildred Williams, a Northwestern student, in 1949. They had 2 children and divorced in 1959, daughter Christie and son David.
  • In 1971, Hefner stated that he did experiment with bise*uality.
  • Hefner purchased the Playboy Mansion West in 1971 and permanently to that new LA residence from Chicago in 1975. The mansion was put up for sale for $200 million in 2016, with the condition that Hugh would continue to live and work there. It was purchased for $100 Daren Metropoulos the same year.
  • Hugh suffered a minor stroke in 1985 which caused him to change his lifestyle. Subsequently, his daughter Christie took over Playboy operations in 1988.
  • Hugh married Kimberley Conrad, Playmate of the Year, in 1989 and the couple had 2 sons. Conrad was 36 years his junior at the time of marriage. The couple separated in 1998, and divorced 11 years after separation. The names of the two sons are  Marston Glenn (born 1990) and Cooper Bradford (born 1991)
  • Hefner began dating Crystal Harris in 2009. They became engaged a year later and after some turmoil, got married on New Year’s Eve in 2012.
  • Hugh died in his mansion on September 27, 2017. He was 91 years old. Hefner had purchased the crypt adjacent to Marilyn Monroe at Westwood Village Memorial Park Cemetery for $75,000 in 1992. His ashes were placed in this crypt.    

 Playboy Mansion Inside – Pictures

Hugh Hefner – Net Worth and Inheritance   

  • Hefner’s net worth is estimated to be about $50 million. However, varied sources have stated that his net worth was nearly $110 million with around $45 million as liquid assets.
  • Hugh had 35 percent of Playboy brand ownership and 100 percent ownership of the magazine.
  • Crystal Hefner, Hugh’s wife, will inherit nothing due to the prenuptial agreement.
  • Reports suggest that the wealth of Hefner will be passed on to his children, varied charities, and the University of Southern California film school.

In Books and Movies

Hugh Hefner’s ex girlfriend Holly Madison wrote a sensational book on Hugh Hefner and Playboy known as Down the Rabbit Hole. There is also an inspiring and riveting documentary movie based on his life, called American Playboy, produced by Amazon Prime Video.

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