Oprah Winfrey, Broadcasting Powerhouse

Oprah Winfrey is best known as the host of her own show, The Oprah Winfrey Show from 1986 to 2011. She is also an actor and a producer. As a child, she interviewed her dolls and sometimes animals, too. She was encouraged by her grandmother to memorize Bible verses and recite them in church and other places. Maybe it isn't surprising that she chose a life in the spotlight.

She was born January 29, 1954. In high school, she was on the speech team and took second place in a national competition. This got her a full scholarship to Tennessee State University. When she was 17, she won the Miss Black Tennessee contest. This got her noticed by a black radio station in Nashville, Tennessee. The station hired her to read the news on air. She did this part-time during her last year in high school and during her first two years in college.

In 1973, she was hired by the CBS TV station in Nashville as the news anchor. She was only nineteen years old. She was the youngest - and the first black - newscaster in Nashville. She thought the best part of the job was that she could attend her college classes during the day and work at the TV station in the evenings. Three years later, she moved to Baltimore, Maryland. She worked on the news there, finding it a bumpy road. In 1978, things got better when she began to co-host a morning talk show.

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