|Winfrey, Oprah (1954-...), is
an American host and producer of one of the highest-rated television talk shows. Her
sympathetic, natural, and sincere style has made millions of viewers worldwide watch
"The Oprah Winfrey Show" regularly. Winfrey is one of the few women to head her
own TV and film production studio, Harpo Productions.
Winfrey is also an actress. She received an Academy Award nomination as best supporting
actress for her film debut in The Color Purple (1985).
Oprah Gail Winfrey was born in Kosciusko, Mississippi, to a single mother and grew up in
poverty. Winfrey later moved to Nashville to live with her father. At age 19, while
attending Tennessee State University, Winfrey became the anchorwoman of a TV news
broadcast in Nashville. She was the first African American woman and one of the youngest
persons to anchor a newscast in Nashville.
Winfrey had her first major success in 1984 when she became host of "A.M.
Chicago," a local TV talk show. The show was renamed "The Oprah Winfrey
Show" in 1985 and became syndicated (broadcast nationally) in 1986. Winfrey has won
numerous Daytime Emmy Awards as best talk show host.
Contributor: Robert Feder, B.S., Television and Radio Columnist,