|Dr. Richard Stephen Sackler.
|Former chairman and president of Purdue Pharma
|March 10, 1945.
|Roslyn, New York, US.
|Boca Raton, Florida.
|Mother: Beverly Feldman.
Father: Late. Raymond Sackler.
|Brother: Jonathan Sackler.
|Columbia University (BA).
New York University (MD).
|USD 2.3 Billion.
|In feet: 5' 5".
In centimeters: 165 cm.
In meters: 1.65 m.
Pounds: 141.7 lbs.
All About American Business Tycoon Richard Sackler
Richard Sackler (age: 78, March 10, 1945) is a prominent American billionaire businessman and physician best known for being the chairman and president of Purdue Pharma.
He played a pivotal role in developing and marketing OxyContin, a prescription painkiller that became central to the opioid epidemic in the United States.
Sackler’s involvement with Purdue Pharma and OxyContin has been the subject of intense scrutiny, legal battles, and public controversy. He was instrumental in obtaining FDA approval for the drug in 1995, positioning it as a solution for managing moderate to severe pain.
Working alongside his brothers Mortimer and Raymond, Richard Sackler orchestrated a significant pharmaceutical marketing campaign for OxyContin. The campaign employed persuasive techniques that contributed to the rapid and widespread adoption of the drug.
One of Purdue Pharma’s sales representatives, Steven May, who joined the company in 1999, recalled the conviction among the team that they were addressing a genuine need. Despite subsequent controversies, many initially believed they were making a positive impact.
Richard Sackler’s influence and leadership left a lasting impression on those who worked closely with him. Steven May, reflecting on his experience, expressed his admiration for Sackler’s role in making OxyContin a reality and the aspirations it fueled. The complex legacy of Richard Sackler and his involvement with OxyContin continues to be a subject of debate.
A Closer Look at the Sackler Family’s History
Let’s look closer at the Sackler family, many well-known folks in America. You might have heard about their charity work, but another side to the story is that they’re also tied up with Purdue Pharma, the company that made and pushed the super addictive painkiller OxyContin.
Back in the 1950s, three Sackler brothers – Arthur, Mortimer, and Raymond – got into the drug business by taking over a small company called Purdue Frederick. They turned it into Purdue Pharma, the big player we know today.
Richard Sackler is one of the Sacklers. His dad is Raymond, one of those brothers. Richard’s been part of Purdue Pharma for a while, doing different jobs like vice president and president.
Now, here’s where things get dicey. Richard is sort of famous for being the guy behind OxyContin. He and his team said the painkiller wasn’t addictive, even though it really was.
They said OxyContin was safe because it slowly released the medicine into your body. But that turned out to be not true. People started misusing the drug, getting addicted, and even dying from it. Despite this, Purdue Pharma raked in a ton of money.
People are pretty upset because they think Purdue Pharma, led by the Sacklers, played a big role in the opioid crisis. They say the company’s pushy marketing and downplaying of addiction risks made things worse. Emails showed that Richard knew about the problems but kept pushing the drug anyway.
In 2001, Richard wrote an email that’s now famous. He talked about people abusing OxyContin and basically blamed them, calling them “reckless criminals.” He made it sound like it was their fault, not the drugs.
Purdue Pharma had to pay $600 million in fines for what they did – one of the biggest penalties ever in the drug world. But the Sackler family itself didn’t take personal responsibility, which really upset a lot of people.
After all the fuss, both Richard and the whole Sackler family stepped away from the public eye. Institutions that used to get their donations, like museums and universities, started cutting ties or felt pressure to do so.
Some TV shows and books, like “Dopesick” and “Painkiller,” have dug into the Sackler story. They’re trying to tell the real deal about what happened behind the scenes.
It’s a way to give justice to the people who suffered from the opioid crisis. At the same time, it shows how the Sacklers’ actions had a big impact on communities nationwide.
Controversies and Legal Battles
Richard Sackler’s involvement in Purdue Pharma’s aggressive marketing of OxyContin led to widespread controversy and legal battles. The drug was initially promoted as a non-addictive solution for pain relief, a later proven dangerously misleading claim.
The Sackler family, including Richard, faced an onslaught of legal action, with thousands of lawsuits filed against them. Individuals, states, and local governments accused Purdue Pharma’s marketing tactics of fueling addiction and overdose deaths.
OxyContin’s massive commercial success generated billions of dollars for the Sackler family. However, in September 2019, Purdue Pharma filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy to address the legal challenges and compensate victims of the opioid epidemic.
A proposed settlement aimed to transform Purdue Pharma into a public trust, effectively removing the Sackler family’s control over the company. This move was intended to allocate resources to address the devastating consequences of the opioid crisis.
Amid the legal battles, the US Second Circuit Court of Appeals approved a $6 billion settlement in which the Sacklers, including Richard, would contribute a significant portion of their wealth to combat the opioid epidemic.
This decision garnered support for its resource allocation and criticism for its potential to shield the family from future civil lawsuits related to OxyContin.
The Sackler family’s stance emphasized the importance of implementing the resolution to support those affected by the crisis. Critics, however, argued that the deal might hinder full accountability and justice.
For the families impacted by the opioid crisis, the prospect of the Sackler family, including Richard, receiving protection and retaining their wealth remains contentious. Ongoing legal proceedings raise complex questions about fairness and responsibility. Despite legal battles, the Sackler family’s wealth remains substantial, with an estimated net worth of up to $15 billion.
Where is Richard Sackler Now?
Richard Sackler, the former president, and co-chairman of the board of directors of Purdue Pharma, currently resides in a relatively modest $1.7 million house in Boca Raton, Palm Beach County, Florida.
In recent times, Sackler’s real estate transactions have drawn attention. He notably sold a luxurious property in Beverly Hills for $20 million. This raised questions, given Purdue Pharma’s connection to the opioid crisis.
Richard Sackler testified in a federal bankruptcy court in August 2021, responding with a “No” to questions about his involvement in the opioid crisis and Purdue Pharma’s role.
Amid legal battles and public scrutiny, Richard Sackler remains an enigmatic figure, asserting limited knowledge and responsibility for the consequences of OxyContin and Purdue Pharma.
Despite paying $4.5 billion in settlements, the Sacklers deny blame for the public health crisis that claimed over half a million lives.
In court, Sackler revealed he was unfamiliar with the number of Americans who died from OxyContin, indicating such data was beyond his grasp.
Sackler’s wealth remains, with no Sackler family member facing criminal charges for OxyContin’s marketing or overdose deaths.
Richard Sackler Family and Education
Born on March 10, 1945, in Roslyn, New York, Richard Sackler comes from a family with a notable history. His parents are Beverly Feldman and Raymond Sackler.
Raymond, a big player in the pharmaceutical world, sadly passed away at 97 on July 17, 2017.
Along with his brothers Arthur M. Sackler and Mortimer Sackler, Raymond played a key role in getting hold of Purdue Pharma.
The Sackler family’s story is connected to two big things: how pharmaceutical companies started directly promoting their drugs and the opioid crisis that followed.
They’ve also done some charity work, but some folks say it might be a way to make up for the money they made from selling opioids.
When he was younger, Dr. Richard Sackler was all about learning. He went to Columbia University and got a degree there. Then, he went to the New York University School of Medicine to become a doctor.
He even took classes at Harvard University Business School to learn about management. He’s allowed to be a doctor in New York and Connecticut.
Richard Sackler Wife, Kids, and Divorced
Richard Sackler was previously married to Beth Sackler, but the couple divorced. They have three kids: Rebecca, Marianna, and David. The family is also behind the Richard and Beth Sackler Foundation, which does charity work.
Back in 2009, Richard Sackler and his ex-wife Beth teamed up with his brother Jonathan Sackler and sister-in-law Mary Corson and donated $3 million to create the Richard Sackler and Jonathan Sackler Professorship in Internal Medicine.
Basically, they wanted to support medical learning, and they gave this special title to Dr. Thomas J. Lynch Jr., who’s a big deal at Yale Cancer Center and Smilow Cancer Hospital.
But their giving spirit didn’t stop there. Richard Sackler and his kids – Rebecca, Marianna, and David – are all about helping out with medical stuff. In March, they got things going by starting The Richard Sackler Family Endowment in Medicine.
Richard Sackler FAQs
Ques: What is Richard Sackler’s Net Worth?
Ans: USD 2.3 Billion.
Ques: What is Richard Sackler’s age?
Ans: He is 78 years old.
Ques: Who played Richard Sackler’s role in the Netflix series Painkiller?
Ans: Matthew Broderick.
Ques: Who is Richard Sackler’s ex-wife?