Dana Frederick White Jr. was born on July 28, 1969, in Manchester, Connecticut. He was born to his parents, June and Dana White Sr.
Dana is Irish American. For most of his formative years, White resided in Ware, Massachusetts.
For the duration of their early years, White and his sister Kelly were brought up by their mother and her family. White’s mother was a nurse by profession. When White was in the third grade, the family relocated to Las Vegas because the city gave nurses more pay.
Lorenzo Fertitta and White both attended Bishop Gorman High School. Nevertheless, it was not until much later that they became close friends.
White said he “got kicked out of Gorman twice” and despised going to school. White went to Maine during his final year of high school.
White started college twice after graduating from Hermon High School in 1987, first at Quincy College and then at UMass Boston. However, he left each time during the first semester.
White had a variety of jobs during this period. This included installing asphalt, becoming a bouncer at an Irish pub and being a porter at the Boston Harbour Hotel.
At the age of 17, White started boxing. He became friends with Peter Welch, a former Golden Gloves winner. Through this connection, White made the decision to get into the combat sports industry.
White and Welch opened a boxing facility in Boston. After seeing a brain damaged competitor and fearing that he might experience the same fate, White decided against becoming a professional boxer. After that, White worked as a boxing instructor.
Along with Lorenzo Fertitta and his elder brother Frank Fertitta III, White started teaching jiu-jitsu with John Lewis in Las Vegas while continuing to operate boxercise clubs.
White then met Chuck Liddell and Tito Ortiz, who later hired him as their manager.
White first met Semaphore Entertainment Group owner Bob Meyrowitz while serving as a manager for Ortiz and Liddell. SEG is the former parent organization of the UFC.
After he discovered that Meyrowitz was trying to sell it, he approached his old buddy Lorenzo Fertitta (an executive and co-founder of Station Casinos and a former commissioner of the Nevada State Athletic Commission) to see if he would be interested in buying the UFC.
For $2 million in January 2001, Lorenzo and his elder brother Frank bought the UFC. The UFC became a subsidiary of Zuffa. White was appointed president of the business.
White said that all they got when he and the Fertittas bought the UFC was the name “UFC” and an old octagon. The UFC.com website had been sold as a result of the previous owners trying to avoid escape bankruptcy.
The UFC eventually became a very lucrative company under White’s leadership. Zuffa was sold for $4.025 billion in July 2016 to a group of investors headed by WME-IMG.
At the time of the sale, White held 9% of the business. White kept his position as president and received a stake in the growing company.
The UFC announced in May 2017 White would be the host of Dana White’s Contender Series. The programme was licenced independently from the UFC brand. The show gives aspiring combatants the opportunity to display their skills in the hope that they may one day participate in the UFC.
White renewed his seven-year term as president of the organization in March 2019. Additionally, the UFC signed a deal with ESPN.
Due to McGregor’s deal with the UFC, White joined the boxing world by co-promoting Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs. Conor McGregor. White said in 2019 that he intended to include boxing to the UFC’s business portfolio.
Later, he changed his mind about these proposals. White claimed that the boxing promotion is “a broken business that is an absolute nightmare to try to fix.”
Dana White is the owner of Power Slap, a slap combat competition. It premiered in January 2023.
White married his wife Anne in 1996. They first became friends when they were in the seventh grade. The couple has one daughter and two boys.
In 2011, White’s mother published a book named ‘Dana White, King of MMA: An Unauthorized Biography.’ In the book, June said that Dana had “turned his back on his family and friends who were there for him when he needed help and support” as a result of his success with the UFC.
In February 2018, Dana White appeared in an episode of the History Channel’s Pawn Stars episode. White spent almost $60,000 on katanas, including one of Rick Harrison’s from the 17th century.
White says in an interview with the BBC that he was a huge fan of the New England Patriots as a child. He also said that Patriots quarterback Tom Brady is his man crush.
White in May 2012 said that he had been diagnosed with a neurological illness called Ménière’s disease. White now believes that his Ménière’s symptoms have significantly decreased as a result of his Orthokine therapy.
In 2022, White said that doctors had discovered that he had abnormally high triglyceride levels. If he didn’t fix the issues, he would only have 10.4 years to live. Since then, White he has followed a ketogenic diet. He claims has the diet has helped him with remedy leg discomfort and sleep apnea.
White and his wife Anne were seen on camera arguing and eventually engaging into a slapping incident at a 2022 New Year’s Eve party in a Cabo San Lucas, Mexico nightclub. In the video, Anne slapped White and White slapped her bad.
Both acknowledged their mistakes and apologized for what they did, attributing it to the large amounts of alcohol they had consumed. After the incident, the UFC made no comment or attempt to address White’s behavior.