Thirty Years

Thirty years ago today the Gotham Gal and I were married. It was a very warm and humid day in the Washington DC area and the skies opened up and poured during the wedding ceremony which was happily inside. After that, the humidity cleared and the sun came out and it turned into a beautiful evening. That was a good omen and while our marriage has had a few thunderstorms, it has mostly been sunny skies.

We’ve known each other since we were nineteen and have lived together since we were twenty. We moved to NYC at twenty-one without a dime to our names and the first bank account we opened was a joint account. Everything we’ve accomplished over the years has been our collective success and there have been many successes and plenty of failures too.

Our three amazing children are our greatest success and our greatest joy. We also love NYC, LA, Amagansett, Paris, Park City, art, food, and entrepreneurs, not in any particular order.

Thirty years of marriage feels substantial. It’s not yet a lifetime together but we are getting there now. And it feels great. There is no greater feeling in life than to love and be loved and I feel bathed in it today and every day.

To celebrate this milestone, we took off four weeks from memorial day weekend through this coming weekend. I like to call it a victory lap. While we haven’t avoided work entirely, we have cut back on it dramatically. And today, we won’t work at all. We plan to spend the day together in Paris enjoying each other and everything this wonderful city has to offer.

#life lessons

Comments (Archived):

  1. Nawal Roy

    Super congratulations to a live well lived! We learn so much from you, from this community and we love such transparent emotions.

  2. Vendita Auto

    Stats = Health, Health & Health

  3. Alan


  4. Marissa_NYx

    As an avid reader of both your blogs, there’s only one word to share today: ok, maybe three! First, Congratulations! ThenAmazing!and,Thankyou for sharing with usyour lives and values. We’re all richer and better people for it.You’re both truly international treasures.

  5. Vitomir Jevremovic

    Science is progressing. It may be 300 eventually. Congratulations!

  6. kidmercury


  7. Fernando Gutierrez

    Congratulations! you two are an example for those of us who are earlier in that road.

  8. Salt Shaker

    June 20, 1987:1) 1st Rugby World Cup: New Zealand beats France 29-9 in Auckland2) Chuti Tiu, 17, of Wisconsin, crowned America’s Junior Miss3) TV host Johnny Carson marries his 4th wife, Alexis Mass. (Some nuptials just weren’t meant to be).Beautifully written, btw.

    1. awaldstein

      June 20th 1919, my mom was born on Rivington Street.There’s a trend in here somewhere.

      1. Salt Shaker

        Your mom was a trendsetter. Look how hot Rivington is today.

  9. awaldstein

    Mazel tov to the two of you Fred. Please extend that to Joanne if you will.Need to say as well that while a subtext, this community is an accomplishment in its own right and a pleasure to be part of it.Enjoy!

  10. Gustavo Vizcardo

    Congratulations to both of you….!!! you deserve it very much….!!! if you haven’t done so, visit Manco-Paris (… and enjoy the best food

  11. Mitch Kline

    Congratulations. As I tell others about my wife of 35 years. She must be very patient…. 🙂

  12. JimHirshfield

    Here’s to many more happy years! Cheers!

  13. Scott Kurnit

    Congrats!! So many achievements. So much fun to watch and learn from you.

  14. Joe Lazarus

    Tous mes voeux vous accompagnent.

  15. Mike Zamansky

    Congratulations on finding each other and building fulfilling lives, family, and careers!!

  16. DCTech

    Congrats Fred amazing stuff!

  17. Erin


    1. Twain Twain

      THIS.I loved that Joanne wrote that she was and is “CEO of the Wilson family.”

      1. Erin

        She’s got a good personality for it. :).

  18. Tadashiyara


  19. Tom Labus

    Well said and even better lived. Congrats on your anniversary!!!!

  20. Pointsandfigures

    Congrats. Agree about how it feels substantial, but not quite a whole life. My wife and I did 30 in May. Have a great day.

  21. Thees Peereboom

    Congratulations! And thank you for all your insights.

  22. Venkat Raman

    Happy anniversary to you both.

  23. Steven Kane

    Love to both you lucky humans. That is such a wonderful accomplishment…!

  24. Jeff J

    Congratulations! Thirty years is both long and too short to call a lifetime, but it’s a wonderful milestone. May you have many more decades together filled with love, health and happiness.

  25. cbw

    My first post here – This is so beautiful! Congratulations! I have followed your postings for 2 years, and now follow the Gotham Gal as well. You both inspire conversation, thoughtfulness, and the fire to continue to follow my passions. Hope you have a terrific day! Here’s to 30 more!

    1. JaredMermey

      I second the sentiment here. I was a long time reader, before beginning to comment. (As people would call Mike and Mad Dog on WFAN would say, “Long time listener, first time caller.”)Fred’s gift as a writer is to make this blog feel as if we get to know him personally from how he shares his ideas, how often he writes and how he interacts with the community here.Congratulations to you and the Gotham Gal.

      1. wynn lare

        DITTO DITTO DITTO been warm and fuzzy for two days thinking about this anniversary post and ‘getting to know him personally’ is the true joy in the reading ….Lovely crafted life.The ‘Ralph Lauren’ of VC …. perhaps ….without talking any uniqueness away from either man

  26. WA

    Happy Anniversary! I would pose if you met at 19 then you are closing in on your second life time together: 19-38 and 39-57! Congrats!

  27. onowahoo

    Congratulations! That is quite the Milestone.

  28. Robert Heiblim


  29. prankeapple

    As the progenitors of primates on the African savannah who for millions of years barely had a dime to their names as well, we’re wired to derive satisfaction from climbing status hierarchies (for which wealth is just a proxy) and replicating our genetic material (having children). You’ve managed to do both, hence the warm glow clearly exuding from this post.That mildly autistic Darwinian point aside… congrats on the 30 years.

  30. Seine

    30 years anniversary “les noces de perles” as rare and precious as pearls. Congratulations! on such wonderful accomplishement.

  31. Colin Bozarth

    Congratulations Fred! Can’t wait to visit Paris in a couple of weeks with my wife of 1.5 years.

  32. Steve Goldstein


  33. meredithcollinz

    Beautiful sentiment. You guys are the coolest. Congrats!

  34. David Noël

    Congratulations, Joanne & Fred!

  35. ErikSchwartz

    Congratulations!Here’s to many more!

  36. iggyfanlo

    Thanks so much for the sincere and heartfelt sharing of your joy… that is a gift

  37. Femmes de Consequence

    Lovely, Fred. I wish you and the Gotham Gal the happiest of anniversaries and thirty more years of love and success in all forms.

  38. Adam Parish

    Congrats Fred and Gotham Gal.

  39. Stephen DeWitt

    Congratulations. Enjoy an extended victory lap!!!!

  40. Dana Hoffer

    Fred, GG, True love exists. True commitment is real. Respect for shared values can thrive. Sharing your story is a powerful message of hope and aspiration. Thank you. Dana and Jane Hoffer

  41. TanyaMonteiro

    Congratulations. Wishing you many many more victory laps, good health and JOY filled moments

  42. kirklove

    Congrats brother

  43. Renee Leibler

    Such a wonderful post! I am an entrepreneur and professor in NYC teaching entrepreneurship. I follow your posts religiously and find this one particularly heart warming!Enjoy your special day.

  44. lynnerae

    Congrats, Fred and Joanne — you are both an inspiration to this community which you have built, in so many ways. Thanks for sharing such lovely sentiments, and enjoy this day!

  45. PhilipSugar

    What is most impressive to me is being able to go from 20 to 50. I got married in my late 30’s. By that time you’ve both gone through many changes. Of all of my friends I can only think of one that was married at that age and made it through.Congrats

    1. Twain Twain

      Still not married and after reading both their posts … I BETTER GET MY SKATES ON!

      1. PhilipSugar

        You will be fine either way. You know neither my wife nor I thought we would ever get married. We met on a sailing trip in Greece that one of my sales guys (greek) organized.We had several friends that had real struggles trying to have kids so we weren’t sure that was going to happen either but we said we’d give it a year or two and then not worry about it, because you could see how upsetting it was to them.Within one month she was pregnant. When I told my parents (very strict) I could see them counting back from the due date and then a big smile. (we were engaged by rule for a year)So what I am saying is in the words of Bob Marley (who worked the line at the Chrysler plant a mile from my office) is “don’t worry be happy”

  46. DJL

    Congratulations! You two must have had a “sustainable competitive advantage” that worked over all these years. There is nothing more admirable or sacred that a great family.

  47. Jeff Hohner

    Congratulations Fred and Joanne! Enjoy your special day!

  48. Kate Delhagen

    Oui! Oui! Congratulations on your love affair. After 30 years, you surely know that thunderstorms keep things interesting…and there’s usually a rainbow. Thank you for your inspiration. Go Fred & GG!

  49. johnbattelle


  50. LE

    We’ve known each other since we were nineteen and have lived together since we were twenty.Congratulations. I for one would love to know more details on how you met. (Emphasis on as many details as you can provide).

  51. JLM

    .Congratulations to Joanne and Fred Wilson — exemplars of the benefits of capitalism, hard work, and traditional American values. It is not easy to stay married for 30 years today.But, remember you are less than half way home. Keep driving forward.Celebrate your strong marriage, great kids, fierce commitment to capitalism, and the American and the Gotham Girl crowd celebrate with you.Said the guy who’s been married for 38 years.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

  52. lisa hickey

    Congratulations! You and Joanne are both amazing as individuals and extra so as a couple—you are a model for how a lasting, profound, intelligent, professional, joyful relationship can work. Sending best wishes for continued happiness in all the years that follow.

  53. george

    Congratulations!You’ve only just begun!!!

  54. aminTorres

    The love comes thru the writing.Congrats and best wishes to you and Joanne.

  55. Alejandro Cosentino

    Such a nice love story. Congrats for that accomplishment. It’s not easy to get that.

  56. JamesHRH

    That’s simply a cool story. Congratulations.

  57. Robert Holtz

    Happy Anniversary, Fred. 30 years is indeed an accomplishment, especially in this day and age. What you and Gotham Gal have achieved together is exemplary. Here’s to many more victory laps in the future!

  58. sigmaalgebra

    Great congratulations to both of you and the strong, larger family you two have built.I tried, and it didn’t work: Eventually I figured out the problem wasn’t me. Instead, she, both of her sisters, and her mother, all of them put on an act of loving a good, strong marriage with love, home, and family, went through very traditional wedding ceremonies and married husbands who very much wanted love, home, and family, but in fact all four of those women bitterly hated anything having to do with love, home, family, children, a husband, men, building anything, etc. Instead, apparently heavily left over from some of the economic and psychological stresses of the Great Depression, the mother, her mother, and all the daughters were convinced that their only possible approach to any security was to (A) put on an act like society wanted, (B) fool, use, exploit men for whatever the women could get from men, (C) have children but only if their husbands insisted and, then, hate every second having to do with parenting, (D) dedicate themselves to volunteer work in the community, and then (E) expect that the community would be obligated to provide those women with security. For the grandmother, during the Great Depression, and only in that case, (E) essentially worked. Of all those women, the best of the marriages was poor, and the rest were just awful and ended by divorce or death. Those women just did NOT want love, home, and family, deeply, profoundly, bitterly, hated and despised any such things.Why did those women have bad lives? In simple but correct terms, because all their thinking about life was junk, and each minute of each day they fought with all their considerable strength, intelligence, and energy to push away anything like a good life. Their thinking? Some of the worse had its seeds in the bitter anger of Betty Friedan, that great Communist saboteur of millions of US families.An astounding situation was a special case: All those women believed that if they had any job that paid more than minimum wage, then they would lose the security of the obligation of society to take care of them. No joke. And the prospect of that loss of security literally scared them out of their wits, rendered their often brilliant minds to irrational, self-destructive mush.Such things happen. No one told me this stuff, not even hints. I had to pay “full tuition”. Now that I know, where can I apply for a do-over?I was pleased today to read a comment of our FLOTUS that she looked forward to the memories they would be creating in their new home in the White House. Good: She understands the important role of memories. Also activities, accomplishments, traditions, all things like a lot, don’t want to lose, and will help hold the family together.Actually, Darwin is on the case: It’s fair to say that all those women were weak, sick, or dead limbs on the tree. So, such problems will be less in the future.But strongly I still blame the Great Depression: It put a lot of people in just impossible positions, basically counting on, depending on, functioning in an urban job-based economy which suddenly didn’t exist. The costs were very high, including some really serious psychological and social costs. The US lost a lot of social capital and, really, has yet fully to recover.So, I conclude that when the Fed needs to print money to replace the money that some bubble destroyed but refuses to, they are among the most evil forces in all of history.I fear that the Fed is so profoundly confused and incompetent that they will mess up the current opportunity for high real growth if they possibly can. Currently the Fed wants 2% a year inflation (DUMB idea), sees the economy starting to come out of the disaster of the bubble burst of 2008 so raises interest rates 0.25%/year, yet is concerned about deflation from automation. We’re talking being pulled in three mutually contradictory ways, profoundly confused. Children playing with matches in a gun powder factory. The Fed can easily destroy millions more US families.Here in the US, and in the EU and Russia, we all have to face a simple, bold, bottom line, blunt, fact just impossible to ignore: Our birth rate is so low we are rapidly going extinct. Quite literally. Really, due to this fact, the idea that the US has prosperity is BS — we can’t even reproduce. Family formation just sucks, is a disaster. In broad terms, the examples from my wife and her sisters, mother, and grandmother are all just special cases.How can a couple at 19 or so try to form a good family? Possible, yes — Fred and GG did it. Easy? No. Easy enough to be done on average? The worst statistic of them all, HELL NO. We’re not even close. And as we move closer to being a country able to reproduce successfully, the Fed with their grotesque incompetence will do their best to ruin the situation. Congress will chip in their efforts. Fanny/Freddie did it last time; hopefully they have been surgically altered, fixed, modified enough to be unable to be so destructive again.

  59. Sara Gori

    Enhorabuena as we say in Spanish! Congrats to you and Joanne. Nothing like celebrating a life filled with love in the most romantic city in the world. Hope we can catch up while you are both here. Total fans of both you!

  60. Sara Gori

    My parents were together 60 years until my mom died recently. They are the best example of how a marriage should be. Glad to see you are also giving your kids the same example. People tend to go into marriage with the exit strategy in mind. Long term model seems to be dead.

  61. creative group

    CONTRIBUTORS:Fred and Gotham Gal congratulations on the milestone.——–Side note:Are we the only happily single, alone but never lonely, extroverted and enjoying being solo artists?

  62. Jeff Judge

    Congratulations to you both!My wife and I are on 13 and looking forward to writing a similar post 🙂

  63. ShanaC

    Mazel tov, onto the next forevers, with more good stories to tell and share with each other

  64. mikenolan99

    Wow – congrats. Spooky how similar our stories are… could I borrow this post for August 22nd? Married 30 years, known each-other since we were 19, three kids, lotsa of start-ups. (Dr. Jules is sending her down payment for her new business tomorrow!)

  65. scottythebody


  66. jason wright

    No Bledska? Vows.No Vienna? Art.No way…but east. Happy renups.

  67. CJ

    Congratulations! A truly awesome accomplishment!

  68. bsoist


  69. Semil Shah

    Congrats to you and Joanne!

  70. Donna Brewington White

    Catching up on AVC. Wonderful post! Congratulations to you and GG! Much to celebrate!

  71. Zakaria Alami

    Enjoy a well deserved lap