Writers

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Oprah Winfrey

1954-

Oprah Gail Winfrey (born Orpah Gail Winfrey; January 29, 1954) is an American talk show host, television producer, actress, author, and philanthropist. She is best known for her talk show, The Oprah Winfrey Show, broadcast from Chicago, which was the highest-rated television program of its kind in history and ran in national syndication for 25 years from 1986 to 2011. WOprah Winfrey was born in Mississippi. She was named Orpah, and her single mother moved to the North, leaving the baby with her grandmother. For six years, Oprah lived on a farm with her grandmother and she credits the hard physical life of her grandmother for motivating her to have a different life. Life back with her mother in Milwaukee, Wisconsin was much more difficult for the young Oprah. She was raped by a cousin, and sexually assaulted by an uncle and family friend. An important later influence was her father who expected high standards of behaviour and high grades at school when she went to live with him in Nashville at the age of fourteen. By nineteen, Oprah Winfrey was a co-anchor for the local evening news. She popularized and revolutionized the tabloid talk show genre pioneered by Phil Donahue and in 1994, she was inducted into the National Women's Hall of Fame. By the mid-1990s, Winfrey had reinvented her show with a focus on literature, self-improvement, mindfulness, and spirituality. Winfrey has won many accolades throughout her career which includes 18 Daytime Emmy Awards, including the Lifetime Achievement Award and the Chairman's Award, 2 Primetime Emmy Awards, including the Bob Hope Humanitarian Award, a Tony Award, a Peabody Award and the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award, awarded by the Academy Awards and two additional Academy Award nominations.