Donald Trump’s Dads: Exploring the Influences of Fatherhood

Donald Trump, the 45th President of the United States, is a highly polarizing figure. Known for his business ventures, reality TV show, and controversial political career, he has both supporters and critics all around the world. Behind any influential person, there is often a web of complex relationships that shape their worldview and actions. In this blog post, we delve into the role of Donald Trump’s dads, examining the influence they had on his life and career.

The Early Years

Donald John Trump was born on June 14, 1946, in Queens, New York City. His parents, Fred Trump and Mary Anne MacLeod, played significant roles in his upbringing. While both parents were undoubtedly influential, we will focus primarily on the father figures in Trump’s life.

Fred Trump: The Business Mogul

Fred Trump, Donald’s biological father, was a successful real estate developer. He started his career in the 1920s, constructing houses and apartment buildings in Queens and Brooklyn. Over time, Fred Trump’s empire grew, making him one of the most prominent real estate developers in New York City.

As a young boy, Donald Trump often accompanied his father to construction sites, where he learned the ins and outs of the real estate business. Fred Trump instilled in his son the importance of hard work, negotiation skills, and deal-making. These early experiences would later shape Donald Trump’s approach to business and contribute to his ambition to become a successful entrepreneur.

However, it is important to note that Fred Trump was also known for his controversial business practices, including allegations of racial discrimination in his real estate operations. Although this aspect may have influenced Donald Trump’s perspective on business transactions, it is crucial to recognize that individuals are ultimately responsible for their own actions.

Role of Fatherhood

While Fred Trump provided a strong business foundation for his son, his influence as a father extended beyond the professional sphere. He was said to be a disciplinarian who emphasized the values of loyalty, toughness, and perseverance. These characteristics would shape Donald Trump’s personality and leadership style throughout his life.

Fred Trump’s expectations of success and achievement were high, and he expected his children to follow in his footsteps. This drive for success may have contributed to Donald Trump’s relentless pursuit of goals and his desire to stand out in various areas.

Paternal Influences

While Fred Trump was a significant presence in Donald Trump’s life, it is important to acknowledge that fatherhood can take many forms. In addition to his biological father, Donald Trump also had several father figures who influenced his personal and professional development.

Roy Cohn: The Ruthless Mentor

Roy Cohn, a prominent attorney, served as a mentor and father figure to Donald Trump during the early stages of his business career. Cohn, known for his aggressive and combative legal tactics, taught Trump the importance of never backing down and always fighting to win.

Cohn was a controversial figure, having worked as Senator Joseph McCarthy’s chief counsel during the Red Scare in the 1950s. Despite facing criticism for his involvement in McCarthyism, Cohn continued to wield considerable power as a lawyer and fixer in New York City.

The influence of Roy Cohn on Donald Trump’s life was significant. Trump once described Cohn as “a totally ruthless, disloyal dude” while simultaneously praising his mentor’s approach to life and business. Cohn’s fighting spirit and refusal to compromise had a lasting impact on Trump’s win-at-all-costs mentality, which later characterized his political career.

Norman Vincent Peale: The Positive Thinking Preacher

Norman Vincent Peale, a renowned reverend and author, played a crucial role in shaping Donald Trump’s mindset through the power of positive thinking. Peale was a proponent of the philosophy that positive thoughts lead to positive outcomes.

Trump’s father introduced him to the sermons and teachings of Norman Vincent Peale when he was young. This exposure to Peale’s messages likely influenced Trump’s outlook on life and contributed to his self-confidence and unwavering belief in his abilities.

It is worth noting that Peale’s teachings have faced criticism for promoting a simplistic approach to complex problems and ignoring the nuances of life. However, his influence on Donald Trump’s psyche cannot be denied, as evidenced by Trump’s frequent references to Peale’s impact on his life.


Understanding the influencers in a person’s life is crucial to comprehending their motivations and actions. Donald Trump’s dads, including his biological father Fred Trump and the father figures Roy Cohn and Norman Vincent Peale, shaped various facets of his life, from his business ventures to his political career.

It is important to recognize that while the influence of these father figures played a significant role in shaping Trump, individuals are ultimately responsible for their own choices and actions. Trump’s controversial decisions and policies cannot be solely attributed to the influence of his dads but are the result of a combination of factors, including his own personality and worldview.

By exploring the complex relationships and influences in the life of an influential figure like Donald Trump, we gain valuable insights into the multifaceted nature of human experience and the factors that can mold a person’s trajectory.


1. Biography – Donald Trump

2. Business Insider – Donald Trump’s relationship with his dad and father figures

3. The New York Times – Fred Trump’s Life, Built by a Son He Doubted, Is Study in Family Loyalty

Similar Posts