Oprah Winfrey is one of the highest ranked talk-show host. She managed to revolutionize the tabloid talk-show genre like never before. Actress, writer, producer, and talk-show host, Oprah Winfrey has become one of the worlds most influential person and the richest African American of the 20th century (Woopidoo) I chose Oprah because I think she is a great person who helps other people who are in need. She chooses to share her success with the people who got her to where she is now.
Orpah (Oprah) Gail Winfrey was born on January 29, 1954 in Kosciusko, Mississippi(Wiki). For the first 6 years of her life, she lived with her grandmother while her mom lived in Milwaukee, Wisconsin(Wiki). Oprah was considered a gifted child. She began to read at the age of three and therefore skipped kindergarten and went straight to first grade. Her grandmother was also extremely poor which caused her to wear potato sacks as dresses, this caused her to be nicknamed ?sack girl?(E!) At the age of six she moved with her mother in Milwaukee(Wiki). Since her mother worked all of the time she hardly paid attention to Oprah. As a result she was molested by her cousin, her uncle, and a family friend at the age of nine(Wiki). Oprah became very rebellious and promiscuous. She became pregnant at the age of fourteen but her son died shortly after being born(E!). Her mother was so frustrated with her that she was sent to live with her father in Nashville, Tennessee(Woopidoo). Her father, Vernon, was very strict yet loving. He made her read a book each week and write a repot on it. As a result Oprah started to succeed in high school and even entered and won several pageants(Oprah.com) Oprah studied at Tennessee State University and received a BA in Speech and Performing Arts(Wiki). Oprah?s career in the media industry began as a news anchor and reporter for a television station in Nashville(Wiki). She was the first African American woman television news anchor to work in Nashville on the WTVF-TV station at the age of 19(Oprah.com). She was the moved to “People are Talking” at WJZ-TV in Baltimore where she was able to share her feelings about topics that moved her (wiki). In 1984, Oprah Winfrey became host of AM Chicago(E!). After much success the show was renamed ?The Oprah Winfrey Show?(E!). After the show was renamed, Oprah started to make shows that related to middle-class Americans. After much success she formed her own production company, Harpo Studios Inc. (Oprah spelled backwards)(Wiki). Oprah publishes two magazines:?O, The Oprah Magazine and O at Home and has also co-authored five books. In 2002 Fortune ?called?O, the Oprah Magazine??the most successful start-up ever in the industry?(E!). In 1985, Oprah co-starred in Steven Spielberg?s The Color Purple (E!) Here, she portrayed the part of Sofia, the distraught housewife. The following year Oprah was nominated for an?Academy Award?for?Best Supporting Actress, but lost to?Anjelica Huston(E!). The Color Purple?has been made into a Broadway musical which opened 2005, with Oprah as the producer(Oprah.com). In October 1998 Oprah produced and starred in the film?Beloved(E!). Unfortunately, Beloved?opened to poor box-office results, losing approximately $30 million (E!). Oprah is?considered the richest woman in entertainment. At age 41Oprah, with a net worth of $340 million, and replaced?Bill Cosby?as the only African American on the?Forbes 400(E!).
Oprah has been called “the world’s most powerful woman” by?CNN?and “one of the most influential person of 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007 and 2008? by?Time. In 1998 Oprah became the first woman and first African American to top?Entertainment Weekly’s list of the 101 most powerful people in the entertainment industry (E!) Oprah Winfrey is well known for her philanthropy. In 1998 Oprah began ?Oprah?s Angel Network? a charity that encourages people around the world to make a difference in the lives of the underprivileged. (Oprah.com) She donated a huge chunk of money to Harold Washington Library in Chicago(Wiki). She also sent food and water to the victims of hurricane Katrina (E!) She also helps? build homes for people with low income. In 1990, the NAACP honored Oprah with 4 awards (E!) In the autumn of 2004 during her show each member of the audience received a new?G6?sedan, the 276 cars were donated by?Pontiac (Woopidoo)
Oprah Winfrey had and has an impact on me and others. She is a very inspirational person. She easily identifies herself with anyone and is also a great influence. As time goes by Oprah will become an even bigger American Icon.