About Oprah Winfrey:
Nickname: The Preacher, Lady O
Age: 69 years old (in 2023)
Date of Birth: January 29, 1954
Full Name: Oprah Gail Winfrey
Birthplace: Kosciusko, Mississippi, U.S.
Zodiac Sign: Aquarius
About Oprah Winfrey Height, Weight, and Body Statistics:
Body Measurements: 41-32-40 inches
Height: 5 ft 6inches (1.69 m)
Weight: 77 kg (170 lbs)
Waist: 32 inches
Hair Color: Dark Brown
Eye Color: Dark Brown
Shoe Size: 11 (U.S.)
Dress Size: 14 (U.S.)
Oprah Winfrey Biography:
(Producer, television host, actress, author; born January 29, 1954, in Kosciusko, Mississippi)
She has impacted nearly every aspect of the entertainment world while engaging, inspiring, and enriching the lives of millions. Her achievements would be enough to fill more than a few extraordinary lives. Still, this beloved producer, television host, actress, prominent player on Broadway and in Hollywood, author, and self-made billionaire philanthropist is the stuff of greatness. From her soul-stirring performances on the screen to her numerous producing endeavors and award-winning television show, she has spent her life creating innovative projects that have proven time and again her unique ability to enhance the world’s exposure to the arts and perception of humanity.
Oprah Gail Winfrey was born poor in rural Mississippi to a soldier and an unwed teenage mother. Her childhood was tough by any standards, but the grandmother who raised her on a farm in Kosciusko taught the little girl to read at three. Oprah recited po s and Bible verses in church and became known as the Little Speaker before she was sent away to Milwaukee. Her mother Vernita found work as a maid there, and while her mother was out in their inner city apartment, little Oprah was repeatedly abused for years. She tried escaping that nightmare and was sent to a detention home, only to be turned back when all the beds were full.
Alone and homeless at fourteen, she found her father, Vernon, in Nashville and found a home again. He gave Oprah the structure and home life she needed. “As strict as he was,” she says, “he had concerns about me making the best of my life and would not accept anything he thought was less than my best.”
She was smart, and she was beautiful. At seventeen, she won a beauty contest in Nashville, an on-air job with an African American radio station, and a scholarship from Tennessee State University, where she majored in Speech Communication and Performing Arts. At 19, she became Nashville’s first female African American news anchor. She joined WJZ-TV News in Baltimore as a co-anchor and co-hosted her first talk show, People Are Talking.
Oprah knew how to listen. But, for all her success, few could have expected that when she moved to Chicago in 1984 to host Channel 7’s A.M. Chicago, she would redefine the talk show format and change television forever. The show was renamed The Oprah Winfrey Show; the rest is history. Still, that history was far from finished. Even as America fell in love with this straightforward, unassuming lady, Steven Spielberg watched some tapes of her show sent by Quincy Jones, liked what he saw, and offered Oprah Winfrey the role of Sofia in his film adaptation of Alice Walker’s novel The Color Purple. Her performance earned her nominations for both the Oscar and the Golden Globe for Great Supporting Actress.
Her love of acting was the real thing, and even as the rest of her whirlwind of life continued, Oprah Winfrey later would again earn Serious acclaim for her performance in the film adaptation of Richard Wright’s classic Native Son. Her relationship with The Color Purple would prove long-lasting: Oprah Winfrey produced a huge Broadway and national hit with the musical The Color Purple. She formed her own Harpo Productions in 1986 — “Harpo” is “Oprah” spelled backward –as The Oprah Winfrey Show went national, and her production company would become a significant force not only in television but also in films, publishing, and the then-burgeoning Internet field.
Her interview with Michael Jackson in 1993 drew more than 1,00 million viewers, making it the most-watched interview in television history. The first woman to produce and star in her talk show, she also produced and starred in the miniseries The Women of Brewster Place, followed by There Are No Children Here and Before Women Had Wings.
In 1998, she starred and produced in Beloved, a film adaptation of the novel by the Nobel Prize-winning American author Toni Morrison. As an actress, she has been heard in several successful animated films, including Charlotte’s Web, Bee Movie, and The Princess and the Frog.
Using her talk show to promote good literature, she revitalized America’s reading habits with the Oprah Book Club, which turned classics into bestsellers and sparked a national book club reading craze. Following repeated victories, she launched Oprah Online at AOL. Far from done, she found O, The Oprah Magazine.
She testified before the U.S. Congress in 1991 and was instrumental in promoting the National Child Protection Act. This law aimed to create a national database of child abusers, known as the Oprah Bill, when President Bill Clinton signed it into law. With her Oprah’s Angel Network, she organized fellow philanthropists to encourage everyone who could make charitable contributions and volunteer work. She was the first African American listed by Business Week as one of the top 50 most generous philanthropists. Putting her money where her heart is, she invested over $40 million in children: The Oprah Winfrey Leadership for Girls Academy opened near Johannesburg, South Africa, in 2007. An admiring Nelson Mandela congratulated this indomitable American woman for overcoming her disadvantaged origins to become an inspiration to future generations.
The woman herself is fond of quoting Martin Luther King to get to the heart of that greatness within our reach. “Dr. King said,” Oprah Winfrey told the graduating class at Stanford University in 2008, that “not everybody can be Viral. But everybody can be best because greatness is determined by service.” In her own words, she added that to be great, “you only need a heart full of grace and a soul generated by love.” “When you do good,” Oprah told the students, “I hope you strive for more than just the good feeling that service provides because I know that doing good makes you better. So whatever field you choose, if you operate from the service paradigm, I know your life will have more value, and you will be happy.”
In 2005, Oprah Winfrey received the National Civil Rights Museum’s prestigious Freedom Award, following previous recipients Coretta Scott King, Nelson Mandela, and Presidents Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton. She’s in good company. Then again, Oprah Winfrey is always in good company — she has given her public a huge hug, and the world returns her love.
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