In her thirtieth year, Oprah Winfrey moved to Chicago to go head-to-head with Phil Donahue, the reigning king of tabloid talk shows. In reality, head-to-toe was probably more accurate. Donahue was not only the creator of the tabloid talk genre, but was already widely syndicated, while Oprah was very much the new kid on the block.
But Winfrey took Donahue’s format and raised it a notch. She joined in, matching her guests’ stories with revelations from her own tumultuous life, sharing their hopes and fears as well as their tears. Within months she was out-rating Donahue, and two years later she launched the Oprah Winfrey Show, which almost immediately became the top-rating daytime talk show in the USA. And she owned it.
"The biggest adventure you can ever take is to live the life of your dreams"
Listen to Oprah's inspirational address to graduates of Spelman College 2012