Lawrence Joseph "Larry" Ellison(born August 17, 1944) is an American business magnate, co-founder and chief executive of Oracle Corporation, an enterprise software company. He is the fifth-wealthiest man in the world with an estimated worth of $34 billion including his ownership of Oracle stock.

Larry Ellison was born in New York City to an unwed mother of Jewish heritage;Matthew Symonds, Larry Ellison. Software: An Intimate Portrait of Larry Ellison and Oracle. Simon and Schuster, 2004. pp. 332-333 his father was an Italian American U.S. Air Force pilot. After he contracted pneumonia at the age of nine months his mother gave him to her aunt and uncle for adoption. Larry did not meet his biological mother again until he was 48.

Ellison graduated from Frederic Field Elementary School in Chicago in January 1958 and attended Sullivan High School at least through the fall of 1959 before moving to South Shore. He grew up in a two-bedroom apartment in Chicago's South Shore middle-class Jewish neighborhood. Ellison remembers his adoptive mother as warm and loving, in contrast to his austere, unsupportive, and often distant adoptive father, who adopted the name Ellison to honor his point of entry into the USA, Ellis Island. Louis Ellison was a pompous government employee who had made a small fortune in Chicago real estate, only to lose it during the Great Depression.
Although Ellison was raised in a Reform Jewish home by his adoptive-parents, who attended synagogue regularly, he remained a religious skeptic. Ellison states: "While I think I am religious in one sense, the particular dogmas of Judaism are not dogmas I subscribe to. I don't believe that they are real. They're interesting stories. They're interesting mythology, and I certainly respect people who believe these are literally true, but I don't...I see no evidence for this stuff." At age thirteen, Ellison refused to have a bar mitzvah celebration.
Ellison was a bright but inattentive student. He left the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign after his second year, after not taking his final exams because his adoptive mother had just died. After spending a summer in Northern California, Ellison attended the University of Chicago for one term, where he first encountered computer design. In 1966, aged 22, he moved to northern California.