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Oprah Winfrey

An extraordinary Women

Tenille Allen

on 3 June 2011

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Transcript of Oprah Winfrey

-Oprah Winfrey Early Life Born Orpah Gail Winfrey, January 29, 1954 in Kosciusko, Mississippi to an unmarried teenage mother. Vernita Lee(House maid) & Vernon Winfrey(a coal miner turned barber turned city councilman who had been in the Armed Forces when she was born.) After her birth, Winfrey's mother traveled north and Winfrey spent her first six years living in rural poverty with her grandmother, Hattie Mae Lee At age six, Winfrey moved to an inner-city neighborhood in Milwaukee, Wisconsin with her mother.Her mother then gave birth to another daughter, Winfrey's younger half-sister, Patricia who later died at age 43. Her mother was having difficulty raising both daughters so Winfrey was temporarily sent to live with Vernon in Nashville, Tennessee. While Winfrey was in Nashville, Lee gave birth to a third daughter. Lee gave this daughter(also named Patricia) up for adoption in the hope of easing the financial straits. She didn't learn she had a second half-sister until 2010. By the time Winfrey moved back in with her mom, her mom had also given birth to a boy named Jeffrey, Winfrey's half-brother, who died of AIDS-related causes in 1989. At age 9 she was molested by her cousin, her uncle, and a family friend. When Winfrey discussed the alleged abuse with family members at age 24, they refused to accept what she said. She once commented that she had chosen not to be a mother because she had not been mothered well. At 13, after suffering years of abuse, Winfrey ran away from home. When she was 14, she became pregnant, her son dying shortly after birth. (No one but her family knew about this until 1990 when someone in her family sold the story the National Enquirer.) She went to Lincoln High School, then Nicolet High School, where she says her poverty was constantly rubbed in her face. She began to steal money from her mother in an effort to keep up with her free-spending peers, to lie to and argue with her mother, and to go out with older boys. Her frustrated mother once again sent her to live with Vernon in Nashville, Tennessee though this time she did not take her back. Vernon was strict but encouraging, and made her education a priority. Winfrey became an honors student, was voted Most Popular Girl, and joined her high school speech team at East Nashville High School, placing second in the nation in dramatic interpretation. She won an oratory contest, which secured her a full scholarship to Tennessee State University, a historically black institution, where she studied communication. At age 17, She attracted the attention of the local black radio station, WVOL, which hired her to do the news part-time. She worked there during her senior year of high school, and again while in her first two years of college. Working in local media, she became the youngest news anchor and the first black female news anchor at Nashville's WLAC-TV. She moved to Baltimore's WJZ-TV in 1976 to co-anchor the six o'clock news. She was then recruited to join Richard Sher as co-host of WJZ's local talk show People Are Talking, which premiered on August 14, 1978. She also hosted the local version of Dialing for Dollars there as well. Professional In 1983, Oprah hosted WLS-TV's low-rated half-hour morning talk show, AM Chicago. After only a few months the show went from last place in the ratings to the highest rated talk show in Chicago. Roger Ebert persuaded her to sign a deal with King World.He predicted that she would generate 40 times as much revenue as his television show, At the Movies. It was renamed The Oprah Winfrey Show, expanded to a full hour, and broadcast nationally beginning September 8, 1986. Winfrey also produced and co-starred in the 1989 drama miniseries The Women of Brewster Place, as well as a short-lived spin-off, Brewster Place, co-founded the women's cable television network Oxygen. She is also the president of Harpo Productions (Oprah spelled backwards). January 15, 2008, Winfrey and Discovery Communications announced plans to change Discovery Health Channel into a new channel called OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network launched on January 1, 2011. Film In 1985, Winfrey co-starred in Steven Spielberg's The Color Purple as distraught housewife, Sofia.
nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for her performance.
Helped produce the Broadway version of The Color Purple In October 1998
Winfrey produced and starred in the film Beloved. To prepare for her role as Sethe, the protagonist and former slave, Winfrey experienced a 24-hour simulation of the experience of slavery, which included being tied up and blindfolded and left alone in the woods.
In 2005, Harpo Productions released a film adaptation of Zora Neale Hurston's 1937 novel Their Eyes Were Watching God. The made-for-television film was based upon a teleplay by Suzan-Lori Parks, and starred Halle Berry in the lead female role. Personal Life Winfrey currently lives on her 42-acre estate in Montecito, California. Plus she owns a house in Lavallette, New Jersey, an apartment in Chicago, an estate on Fisher Island, Florida, a house in Douglasville, Georgia, a ski house in Telluride, Colorado, and property on Maui, Hawaii and Antigua. Winfrey and her boyfriend Stedman Graham have been together since 1986. They were engaged to be married in November 1992, but the ceremony never took place. Influence Create the highest, grandest vision possible for your life, because you become what you believe. Timeline 1954-January 29 Oprah was born in Kosciusko, Mississippi
1970-Started reading the news at WVOL local radio station in Nashville while still in high school.
1973-Becomes the youngest person and first African-American woman TV news anchor at WTVF-TV in Nashville.
1983-1984- Moves to Chicago and hosts A.M. Chicago, WLS-TV's morning talk show.
1987- February 9 Oprah aires what is considered to be her best show from Forsyth County, Georgia, where no blacks had been allowed since 1912.
1989- Honored with the Entertainer of the Year Award of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.
1991- Initiates the National Child Protection Act and testifies before the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee to establish a database of child abusers. (Got signed in 1993 by Bill Clinton)
1992-Oprah and Stedman Graham become engaged.
2004- Called one of the most influential people in the world according to Time Magazine. Honored with the Global Humanitarian Action Award of the U.N & U.S.
2005- Number 9 in the list of The Greatest Americans in history.
2007-Honored with the Humanitarian Award by the The Elie Wiesel Foundation for Humanity.
2008- Oprah's Big Give, produced by Harpo Productions, millions of dollars are given to improve many people's life. She used her wealth to bring positive change. Oprah was more than a daytime television program. She lived the American dream. She rose from humble beginnings to become on of the richest, most powerful people in the world. She influenced other talk show host.
“I don’t think there is a talk show host in the world now who hasn’t studied Oprah and thought, I’m going to be the next Oprah,” said Ellis Cashmore, author of the book ‘Celebrity/Culture.’ “Every talk show host has some semblance of Oprah. Her fingerprints are everywhere.”
She has influenced many like a woman named Georgia Garman who wrote to Oprah telling her that she taught her so much when she was a mom with a new baby. "It helped me go through tough times, and helped my mom, too." Said Georgia.
As a public figure, Oprah's influence is far reaching. Connected to her audience and her peers, she interacts with people in all walks of life. Winfrey is broadly recognized as a brilliant business woman; an articulate and compassionate television host; an accomplished actress, producer, publisher, and educator; and a passionate spokes-woman for social causes. Her name and reputation warrant a great deal of respect and her worldwide exposure is overwhelming. Helping Others As a generous wealthy donor, Winfrey takes a hands-on approach in making a difference in the world, often becoming involved in the causes and in promoting the organizations or causes to which she donates. The Oprah Winfrey Foundation has been an avenue for her substantial philanthropy. Additionally, she provides information on many venues through which her viewers and followers can become involved in the many issues or organizations she has highlighted throughout her career, ranging from Habitat for Humanity to Heifer International to women's education to child abuse and neglect. In 2007 she opened a $40-million school for disadvantaged girls in South Africa. The Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls is a girls-only that officially opened in January 2007. Inspired by her own humble beginnings and disadvantaged background, stated that she founded the Leadership Academy to provide educational and leadership opportunities for academically gifted girls from impoverished backgrounds in South Africa who exhibited leadership qualities for making a difference in the world.
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