As a businesswoman and entrepreneur, I often find myself looking to other successful men and women for inspiration. As a result, I decided to highlight a praiseworthy professionals that so many people can look up to, Oprah. She is one of my personal favorite sources of inspiration when it comes to not just my career, but also my general outlook on life.
Saying she has done a lot seems like an understatement since more times than not, I think she has done just about everything. To name drop a few of her greatest accomplishments, “Dubbed the “Queen of All Media” she has been ranked the richest African-American, the greatest black philanthropist in American history and is North America’s first multi-billionaire black person.”
Oprah started from humble beginnings. Born to a single mother in Kosciusko, Mississippi, she spent her early years under the care of her grandmother while her mom traveled in and out. As described on Biography.com, Oprah was shuffled between her mother’s unstable home and her father, Vernon Winfrey, who lived in Nashville.
As mentioned in notable biographies, “Winfrey said her father saved her life,” by providing her structure and pushing her to meet her true potential. While attending high school in Nashville, she excelled on the speech team and secured a full scholarship to Tennessee State University where she studied communication.
After college, Oprah went on to anchor a host of shows with success seemingly following Oprah wherever she went. Her big personality made her stand out in a male-dominated field, and her ratings skyrocketed.
Lessons and Inspiration
This year Oprah came in third on Forbes’ list of the richest self-made American women, and she shows no signs of stopping as she heads into 2018. She returned to the news this fall as a special contributor for 60 Minutes. She continues to also make a splash on screen and behind the scenes as actor/producer megastar.
Oprah isn’t successful just because of her bubbly personality. As The Guardian puts it, “Oprah is one of a new group of elite storytellers who present practical solutions to society’s problems that can be found within the logic of existing profit-driven structures of production and consumption.“ She wants to make impactful and intentional decisions for the greater good.
Her philanthropic work also goes unmatched. Arlissa Aloba noted that “Aside from donating tens of millions of her personal money to charity, she also heads the Oprah Winfrey Foundation and the Angel Network, a public charity that was established to inspire people to make a difference.”
Stay tuned for more praiseworthy professional posts in the future!