This chapter examines Oprah Winfrey’s emergence as one of the nation’s leading entrepreneurs in the entertainment business, as well as an American cultural icon. Beginning in 1985 with The Oprah Winfrey Show, she constructed a wide-ranging financial empire. At the close of the twentieth century Oprah Winfrey was included in the list of “Forbes 400 Richest People In America,” with a net worth in 1999 of $725 million. She is the only African American woman with joint venture ownership in a cable television station and, in addition to owning her own show, Oprah is also one of only three American women in the television and movie industry to establish and own a production studio, HARPO, based in Chicago, Illinois.
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