Black History Month: Oprah Winfrey

Oprah Winfrey is a current-day famous talk show host, media executive, actress, philanthropist and personality. In 2003, Winfrey became the first black female billionaire. She is incredibly motivated, hardworking and has used her success to help people everywhere.

Winfrey was born on Jan. 29, 1954, in Kosciusko, Miss. In 1971, she started at Tennessee State University where she began working in radio and television broadcasting. In 1976, she got a job hosting the TV chat show “People Are Talking”. She then went on to host the show “A.M. Chicago”. Eventually, in 1986, Winfrey launched her hit show, “The Oprah Winfrey Show”. From there, she gained even more popularity, making her name as recognized as it is today.

Winfrey has also used her large platform to help many people. For example, in 1997 she started a school for young girls in South Africa. Winfrey also helped with the creation of the National Child Protection Act, as she has openly discussed her experience with sexual abuse as a child. In 1996, she started Winfrey’s Book Club, a nationwide reading group. She also created the Oprah Winfrey Network and “The Winfrey Magazine”, a lifestyle magazine. 

Because of her efforts to help out others around the world, Winfrey has had countless achievements throughout her career. In 2018, Winfrey also became the first black woman to win the Golden Globes Cecil B. DeMille award for lifetime achievement. In 2013, Winfrey received the Presidential Medal of Freedom from Barack Obama. 

Life magazine called Winfrey the most influential woman of her generation, and that statement reigns true. She built herself up from nothing and became the incredibly powerful and influential celebrity she is today.