Oprah Winfrey, probably the most influential woman of her generation, is a television presenter like no other. Raped at the age of nine and left behind with a dead premature baby at fourteen, nothing could stop the media mogul from reaching great heights. No matter how often life knocked her down, she picked herself up again and climbed the ladder of success until she reached the very top.
By the time she was nineteen years old, Oprah was already co-hosting the evening news on a local radio station and was crowned Miss Black Tennessee in college. For the record, she holds the title of the world’s first black billionaire and the richest self-made American woman to ever walk the earth.
This great woman of our time is, among other things, an American media owner, talk show host, actress, producer, and philanthropist. Most people would easily remember her for her popular talk show “The Oprah Winfrey Show”, the highest-rated television show of its kind.
Oprah Winfrey: Brief Biography & Age
Born on January 29, 1954, in Kosciusko, Mississippi, her mother, Vernita Lee, an unmarried teenage girl who worked as a maid, named Orpah Gail Winfrey at birth, but due to constant mispronunciation by people, the name Oprah became her official name. Although she currently lives in affluence, Oprah Winfrey was born in poverty in the rural Mississippi area and later lived in an inner-city part of Milwaukee before moving to Nashville, Tennessee to live with her father Vernon Winfrey. She suffered sexual harassment from people she called family when she was a child and became pregnant at 14, but the baby was not alive.
She attended Lincoln High School in Milwaukee, whereupon she was transferred to Nicolet High School. She later graduated as the most popular girl in the school at East Nashville High School, where she was a member of the school’s speaker team and finished second in the nation in dramatic interpretation. After winning a speech competition, she was awarded a full scholarship to study Communication Science at Tennessee State University.
During her high school years, Oprah got a job at a local black radio station, WVOL, where she made a name for herself. After making several low-rated television shows the best there is, Oprah Winfrey produced and hosted the Oprah Winfrey Show on September 8, 1986, in Chicago, Illinois, which lasted until May 25, 2011, and still holds the record for the highest-rated daytime talk show in the history of American television. On January 1, 2011, she also launched her own channel, known as the Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN).
Winfrey is not only a renowned talk show host but also starred in films and series such as The Women of Brewster Place, The Color Purple, Beloved, Charlotte’s Web, The Princess, and the frog and bee movie. She has also written many books and articles for tabloids. Oprah is also the proud recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom, awarded to her by President Barack Obama in 2013, and has received several honorary doctorates from Duke and Harvard.
What Is Oprah Winfrey’s Net Worth?
The “Queen of all media”, as she was called, had a difficult beginning, which she turned into a large fortune by using her talent. At the age of 32, she was already a millionaire, and at 41 the talk show had a net worth of $340 million, ousting Bill Cosby as the only African-American in the Forbes 400.
In 2006, Oprah Winfrey earned an annual salary of $260 million, making her the highest-paid television entertainer in the United States. That was five times the salary of Simon Cowell, who finished second. Oprah Winfrey’s income rose to $275 million by 2008. By 2014, Winfrey had a net worth of $2.9 billion.
She is considered the richest African-American woman of the 20th century, the first black multi-billionaire in North America, and probably the most powerful and influential woman in the world. She is also the greatest black philanthropist in American history, if not the world.
Oprah Winfrey’s current net worth is a striking $3 billion in 2018.
Oprah’s Height and Weight Loss Journey
One aspect of Oprah’s successful life that has refused to remain constant is her quest to lose weight. For nearly four decades, we’ve watched the media superstar struggle with her weight, which she opened up about during her time as host of the Oprah Winfrey Show in the 1980s. In the late 1980s, she achieved the desired result in her journey to weight loss by taking a liquid diet called Optifast. In just a few months, she said goodbye to the 67 pounds but gained more weight after returning to a normal diet, and in 1992 Oprah weighed a shocking 237 pounds.
In 2005, she brought her body back up to 160 pounds but slipped back down again to put on all the weight again, and in 2009 she had problems again. Later, she lost over 40 pounds by following the Weight Watchers diet plan, which she said was easier than any other she had followed before. However, her mission to lose 20 pounds by 2015 was thwarted by an ankle injury, and instead of losing weight, she hugged another 17 pounds.
Despite her seemingly endless struggle with her unruly weight, Oprah Winfrey seems to be in a better place since her collaboration with Weight Watchers.