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WBLS CELEBRATES WOMEN'S HISTORY MONTH: 31 DAYS, 31 PHENOMENAL WOMEN
Oprah Winfrey was born January 29, 1954 in Kosciusko, Mississippi. She is known as a American media proprietor, talk show host, actress, producer, and philanthropist. Oprah is ranked the richest African American of the 20th century, the greatest black philanthropist in American History and was for a time the world’s only black billionaire. She is even considered the most influential woman in the world.
Winfrey was born into poverty in Mississippi to a teenage single mother and was later raised in an inner-city Milwaukee neighborhood. She experienced considerable hardship during her childhood, saying she was raped at age nine and became pregnant at 14; her son died in infancy. Oprah was sent to live in Tennessee, where she landed a job in radio in high school, and began co-anchoring the local evening news at the age of 19. She eventually got transferred to the daytime-talk-show arena and after she boost he third-rated local Chicago talk show to first place, she launched her own production company and became internationally syndicated.
Emmy Award-winning television talk-show host, actress and producer. Her Oprah Winfrey Show (debut 1986) is the highest-rated talk show in syndication history. Her book-of-the-month feature on the show regularly raises books from obscurity to national bestsellers. She owns a production company, Harpo, and is one of the highest-paid celebrities in the world. She appeared in the film The Color Purple(1985), and was producer and actress in the television movie The Women of Brewster Place (1989) as well as the film of Toni Morrison’s Beloved (1998), and has produced a number of television movies. In April 2000 she launched O magazine, which became one of the most successful new magazines in publishing history. In April 2002, Oprah launched the first international edition of O in South Africa. In 2003, the Forbes magazine list of American billionaires included Winfrey—the first African-American women to reach billionaire status. From 2004 to 2007, Time magazine has included Oprah on their list of the 100 Most Influential People in the World.