Net Worth: $1.92 billion, up 3.8 percent

LAST YEAR: $1.85 billion

AGE: 67

RESIDENCE: Los Angeles

SOURCE OF WEALTH: Surgical devices, patents, investments

THE MONEY: Became billionaire in 2005 after reaching a $1.35 billion settlement with medical manufacturing giant Medtronic, ending extended court fight over the surgeon’s patents. Invested money in several philanthropic ventures and investment company known as Karlin Asset Management Inc., which manages more than $1.5 billion in capital and invests in real estate, global equities, and natural resources.

THE BUZZ: USC Michelson Center for Convergent Bioscience under construction and expected to be completed next year. Will be largest building on campus. Made possible thanks to $50 million gift from Michelson, a retired orthopedic spinal surgeon, and wife, Alya. Also started animal welfare organization Found Animals Foundation. Michelson’s Medical Research Foundation donated more than $3 million last year to Sabin Vaccine Institute Product Development Partnership, which develops low-cost vaccines targeting tropical diseases and parasitic worms. Has funded and directed three private foundations with endowments of $100 million dedicated to medical research, animal welfare, and education. Decided to become an orthopedic surgeon after his grandmother, who raised him along with his mother in Philadelphia, suffered from a crippling spinal deformity. Has generated more than 955 issued or pending patents worldwide related to orthopedic surgery.

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