Dolly Parton Named to Forbes’ 2021 List of America’s Richest Self-Made Women

In a year when most of the music industry slowed down, the "Jolene" vocalist's businesses experienced a financial boom

Recently, Forbes Magazine’s 2021 list of richest self-made women was released. Of the newcomers added to the list was country icon Dolly Parton, clocking in at $350 million.

Regarding the accomplishment, Forbes noted the following: “In a year when most of the music industry slowed down, the country singer and co-owner of amusement park Dollywood was busier than ever: She wrote a song inspired by her experience during the pandemic, released her first holiday album in 30 years and starred in a Netflix film, Christmas on the Square. Arguably her most important contribution: a $1 million donation that helped fund Moderna’s coronavirus vaccine research.”

Forbes adds that their seventh annual list of America’s richest self-made women was bolstered by a soaring stock market and a flurry of IPOs, which lifted the fortunes of these 100 entrepreneurs, executives, and entertainers by 31% since last year, to a combined $118 billion. Number one on the list for the fourth consecutive year is roofing supply firm ABC’s co-founder Diane Hendricks, whose fortune rose to an estimated $11 billion, making her the first self-made woman from the U.S. to surpass a $10 billion net worth.

Regarding Parton’s income growing via Dollywood during the pandemic, Evan Weiss, the chief operating officer of Dollywood’s consultant agency LW Hospitality Advisors, noted, “While the attraction lost months of revenue at first, once it reopened in June 2020—at a limited capacity at first and with the addition of hundreds of hand-sanitizer stations—it became a go-to tourist attraction for travelers in the region who wanted an outdoor vacation without the risks of flying. The drive-to-staycation market is on fire, and it has been since last year.”