Oprah Winfrey is the richest African-American woman and a media mogul. Take a look at the TV Show and the net worth of ‘The Oprah Winfrey Show’ host.
Oprah Winfrey: early life and net worth
Oprah Winfrey was born in 1954 to an unwed teen mother. Winfrey is an American media proprietor, a talk show host, producer, actress and a philanthropist. She shot to fame with her famous TV Show, ‘The Oprah Winfrey Show’. The TV Show was the highest-rated program of its kind in history. ‘The Oprah Winfrey Show’ was nationally syndicated from 1986 to 2011 in Chicago. Winfrey is often called the ‘Queen of Media.’ She happens to be the richest African-American woman and also the fist multi-billionaire black person of North America. Several assessments have ranked her as the most successful, most influential and also the greatest black philanthropist in American history. President Barack Obama awarded her the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2013. Although born in a poverty stricken family in a rural part of Mississippi to a single teenage unwed mother, she always was determined to rise up in life. She was molested by her male relatives and her mother’s friends in her early teens and she became pregnant as a result. She gave birth to a son at the age of 14 but her son passed away after a few weeks of birth. She was later sent to live with her father who was a barber in Tennessee. Winfrey started working in the radio and also began co-anchoring local evening news at the age of 19. From there, her journey to fame started. She eventually got the day time slot in the radio talk show and then she managed to boost the ratings of local Chicago talk show to the first place. She eventually opened her own production company and became internationally syndicated. Winfrey’s net worth currently accounts to more than $3.1 billion, putting her in the 660th place on the list of billionaires according to Forbes. Her net worth also makes her the first black woman billionaire in the world.
How she built her billion dollar empire
Oprah is one of the savviest business executives today. She got her first break by anchoring local news in Tennessee in the ’70s and ’80s. In 1984, she then began hosting a local talk show in Chicago and boosted its ratings to number 1 position. After two years, she relaunched her show for the national audience. She also worked in the period drama, ‘The Color Purple.’ She won an Academy Award Nomination for her role in ‘The Color Purple.’ She eventually shot to fame. She focused on everyday people in her shows and this struck a chord with the audiences. After putting her show up for national syndication, she managed to rake in huge profits. Over the years, Winfrey continued to expand her wealth and also her influence over the masses. She then starting investing cleverly in other projects. She was the first to invest in Oxygen network which was a cable channel geared toward women. In 2007, NBC bought Oxygen Channel for more than $900 million. She founded the ‘O’ magazine in 2000 who has a total of 2.4 million paid subscriptions. By 2003, Winfrey had established herself as an elite business executive. Forbes listed her as the first black woman in the World’s Richest People list for her net worth of $1 billion in 2003. She later started an Oprah Book Club segment on her talk show that became very influential for the publishing industry. Since then, she has never slowed down. In 2011, she launched her own television project, The Oprah Winfrey Network. The project has not been as successful as her earlier show but it’s ratings have improved recently. Winfrey also partnered with Kraft Heinz on a range of refrigerated soups and side dishes that were rolled out to grocery stores nationwide. She also invested in the struggling company Weight Watchers by buying 10% of the company. The company now has an enrollment of 1 million members. Weight Watchers’s has been on a constant rise since then.
Some interesting facts about the TV show host
The ‘Queen of Media’ has had an exceptional career. Lets take a look at some of her less known facts: Winfrey was named ‘Oprah’ after the Biblical character in the Book of Ruth. Constant mispronouncing of her name made it stick to ‘Oprah.’ She was nicknamed ‘Preacher’ as a child as she had the ability to recite the Bible verses as her grandmother used to take her to the Church regularly. Winfrey won the ‘Miss Black Tennessee’ beauty pageant at the age of 17. Winfrey is 8% Native American, something she discovered when she underwent a DNA test. Winfrey has voiced many cartoon characters like Gussie the Goose and Eudora in ‘The Princess and the Frog.’ She has interviewed countless celebrities in her show including Michael Jackson. Her show with Michael Jackson was the 4th most watched event in American television history with 36 million viewers. In a recent interview with Donald Trump, he was asked about his opinion if Oprah Winfrey ran for the president in 2020. He said that he would beat her in the elections and it would be lots of fun. Donald Trump also added that he didn’t think she would run for president.
Oprah Winfrey was seen in the American historical drama film, ‘Selma’ in 2014. Winfrey played a supporting role in the film, ‘Selma.’ She has also penned her thoughts in the book, ‘What I Know For Sure’ released in 2014. The book ‘What I Know For Sure’ was written by Winfrey when a film critic, Gene Siskel asked her, ‘What do you know for sure?’ The question made her introspect deeply into her life and her thoughts. Winfrey founded The Oprah Winfrey Foundation which is a tax-deductible charitable foundation. It has total assets of $172 million.
An influential woman
The iron lady, TV show queen, and influential philanthropist continues her good work in the American society today. May she thrive with great success for many more years to come!