Who is Mimi Gardner Gates? Meet ‘the woman in the hat’


Hats off to her!

Invoice and Melinda Gates’ eldest daughter, Jennifer Gates, may be the primary spectacle at her lavish Westchester County marriage ceremony to fellow equestrian Nayel Nassar on Saturday, however the 25-year-old Stanford grad might have some competitors within the fashion division.

On Thursday, Mimi Gardner Gates — a 79-year-old revered artwork historian who’s additionally the stepmother of billionaire Invoice Gates — arrived in New York for the weekend’s celebrations carrying a hanging jester-like cap.

Gardner Gates will probably be among the many 1-percenters on the 124-acre, $16 million farm in North Salem that Jennifer’s dad and mom purchased her in 2018.

The cap's ornate pom-pom appears to be a blue flower with an orange stem.
The cap’s ornate pompom seems to be a blue flower with an orange stem.
Elder Ordonez / SplashNews.com

Gardner Gates accompanied 65-year-old Invoice on a helicopter to New York Metropolis after touchdown in Newark in her stepson’s non-public jet — and beamed beneath a black beanie with a flower-shaped topper.

The 79-year-old Gardner Gates appears to dress with flair, in this photo pairing a bright blazer with a striking skirt.
The 79-year-old Gardner Gates’ signature fashion is definitely theatrical!
Dustin Snipes/AP

(Gates, in the meantime, wore a extra modest polo shirt and khakis for his arrival.)

Gardner Gates, a Stanford graduate who earned her Ph.D. in artwork historical past at Yale, married Invoice Gates Sr. — an lawyer and philanthropist who died final September at age 94 — in 1996.

She was the director of the Seattle Artwork Museum from 1994 to 2009, and now serves as director emerita overseeing SAM’s Gardner Heart for Asian Artwork and Concepts. Earlier than that, she spent twenty years at Yale College Artwork Gallery as an Asian artwork curator earlier than turning into its director in 1987, in response to her bio on the Gates Cambridge Scholarship website.

Amongst her different achievements in Seattle, she co-created a 9-acre waterfront sculpture park within the downtown neighborhood of Belltown — a plot that reportedly would have in any other case been offered to condominium builders. She additionally added greater than 2,500 artworks to SAM’s assortment and boosted its endowment from $24.5 million in 1994 to $75.5 million in 2005.

Gardner Gates was divorced when the elder Gates requested her to dinner.

“I didn’t suppose, ‘He’s asking me out.’ I assumed he wished to get extra concerned within the museum,” she beforehand instructed the Seattle Publish-Intelligencer. 

The 2 shared a quiet courtship, and she or he referred to as him a “prince of a person.”

Gardner Gates (far right) married the elder Gates (near right) in 1996.
Gardner Gates (far proper) married the elder Gates (center proper) in 1996.
Elise Amendola/AP

“I by no means imagined I’d be so pleased in my private life,” she instructed the publication.

Messages despatched to the Seattle Artwork Museum and Yale looking for to contact Gardner Gates weren’t returned by press time.