No individual has ever claimed soul ownership of a name the way Oprah has. The former talk show host has a successful production company, TV network and magazine named after her, all of which she owns. She's worth over $2.5 billion and is considered the most influential woman in the world despite being born into poverty. Oprah's fame came as the host of The Oprah Winfrey Show which quickly surpassed Phil Donahue's show as the most watched talk show in America. Through the years, Oprah became famous for her interviews with celebrities and her ability to evoke emotional reactions (cue Tom Cruise and one roughed-up yellow couch). Oprah ended her show in 2011, but continues to work in philanthropy and as the owner of her many ventures.
Known For: Hosting 'The Oprah Winfrey Show'
Oprah Winfrey is living the American Dream. She was born to a teenage single mother in Mississippi, and then raised by her mother in an inner-city Milwaukee neighborhood. Winfrey had a tough childhood. She was raped at age nine and pregnant at 14. Her son would later die during infancy. Winfrey later landed a job co-anchoring a local evening radio news show. But TV would prove to be her medium
Since becoming the a daytime talk show host, Winfrey has gone from a third-rated local show, to a first place, internationally syndicated show.
Oprah has been ranked as the richest African American of the 20th Century. She is also regarded as one of the most powerful and influential women in the world. At one time, Winfrey was also the world's only African American billionaire.
Oprah does much more than host a daytime talk show. She is also a producer, businesswoman and philanthropist. In 2007, Oprah opened the Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls in Johannesburg, South Africa. The project called for Winfrey to invest $40 million of her own money to get the school built.
The baby that Oprah had at 14 died.