by Henni Espinosa, ABS-CBN News
In a matter of days, Donald John Trump is set to become the 45th president of the United States.
But long before he set his sights on the White House, the 70-year old billionaire businessman and former television star was already a larger than life personality.
Trump was born in 1946 in Queens, New York City.
He is the fourth of five children of Mary and Fred Trump, a real estate tycoon. Early on, his father taught him the value of hard work by making him work the lowest-tier jobs in his company.
At age 13, when he started misbehaving in school, Trump was sent to military school — where he was regarded as “a ladies man.”
After graduating from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, he was favored to take over his father’s business, since his older brother, Fred, wanted to be a pilot.
Fred eventually died at age 43 of alcoholism. As a result, Trump abstains from alcohol — and other vices like drugs and cigarettes.
When Trump took control of his father’s company in 1971, he renamed it the Trump Organization, and focused on acquiring and developing properties with the Trump brand name in Manhattan and other parts of the world.
He’s even building a Trump Tower in Manila.
He also has made a name for himself in the entertainment industry. For close to two decades, up until 2015, Trump was an owner in the Miss universe, Miss USA and Miss Teen USA beauty pageants.
In 2003, he also starred in the hit NBC reality show, The Apprentice, where contestants vie for a management position in his company.
Trump is also a best-selling author. He also has his own merchandise, everything from clothing to gift ideas.
Trump claims he’s worth at least 10 billion dollars. But Forbes estimates his total wealth to be 3.7 billion dollars.
Meantime, America’s next first lady — Trump’s third wife, Melania, is no stranger to glitz and glamour.
The 46-year old naturalized US citizen was born in Slovenia. She began modeling at age 16, booking jobs in Milan and Paris, before moving to New York in 1996 — where she landed on the covers of magazines such as GQ, for which she posed nude in 2000.
Melania met Donald at a New York fashion party in 1998.
They got married in 2005 at an extravagant ceremony in Palm Beach, Florida with big name celebrities in attendance, including former President Bill Clinton and his wife, Hillary — who would ironically become Trump’s rival in the 2016 presidential race.
Trump has a 10-year old son with Melania. Barron is his fifth child.
When it comes to their marriage, the couple says they have never have heated arguments. Melania says they do disagree, but they respect each other’s opinions.
As the next resident, Trump plans to create a booming economy that will create 25 million jobs over the next decade.
On immigration, he pledges to rescind President Barack Obama’s executive orders that protect hundreds of thousands of young undocumented immigrants from deportation.
Melania, on the other hand, plans to focus her advocacy against bullying.