Oprah Gail Winfrey (1954-) is an African American television host, producer, actor, and philanthropist. Winfrey was born in Kosciusko, Mississippi, to unmarried parents. Her childhood with her mother and her grandmother was characterized by poverty and domestic abuse. As a teenager, Winfrey ran away from home. When she was 14, her mother sent her to live with her father in Nashville, Tennessee. After winning a full scholarship to Tennessee State University, she studied communication.

In 1970, she won the first Miss Black Tennessee beauty pageant and started her broadcasting career at a local radio station. After working as a news anchor and host at Nashville's WLAC-TV and Baltimore's WJZ-TV, Winfrey was transferred to WLS-TV in Chicago to host a morning talk show. In 1985, she starred ...

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