Thesis: Women in Media

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Women in Media A) Barbara Walters and Her Accomplishments:

Barbara Walters is among the most thriving women in the legacy of TV journalism. Becoming the first woman co-anchor of American Broadcasting Corporation's -- ABC evening news program by accepting an unprecedented $1 million annual salary and bagging almost every award that the media world has to offer, Barbara Walters is the highest paid news hostess with $12 million annual pay packet. Born on September 25, 1929 in Boston, she found herself amidst celebrities from a very early age as her father himself was an owner of a chain of nightclubs and this supposedly contributed to her relaxed attitude while interviewing the rich and famous. An English Graduate from Sarah Lawrence College in New York during 1953, she began her career in journalism becoming the Assistant to Publicity Director and Republican activist McCary of WRCA TV an affiliate of NBC TV. It was here that she honed her writing and production skills and moved on to CBS where she crafted the content for Morning Show, the network's prime time program. ("Barbara Walters Biography (1931-)a," n. d.)

In 1961, she accepted NBC's offer for working as a researcher and writer for the program 'Today' where her major career breakthrough came about when she was deputed to travel with the then U.S. President's wife Jacqueline Kennedy in her trip to India and Pakistan. The trip was a turning point in her illustrious career that went on to earn increasing responsibility at the network. The rising popularity of the Today show made her earn the nickname 'Today girl'. Barbara hosted the show for almost a decade thereby sharpening her specialized snooping yet informal interviewing technique. She established herself as journalist par excellence by the year 1972 and was selected to team in the press corps which accompanied the President Nixon on his epoch making foreign visit to China. The year 1975 was a historic occasion for her when she won her first Daytime Entertainment Emmy Award for being the best host in a talk series. In 1976 she started the first of a series lending her name as Barbara Walters Specials in 1976 in which the program featured President Jimmy Carter and is wife Roslyn Carter. ("Barbara Walters Biography (1931-)a," n. d.)

It was in 1979, when she became the correspondent for ABC News 20/20 handling the assignment on a part-time basis. She was made to arrange for an exclusive interview with former President Richard Nixon in 1980 which was her first interview after putting in her papers. During 2000, Walters renewed her contract with the ABC News for five more years before quitting the channel in September 2004 at the age of 73. It is acknowledged that her greatest strengths are in refining the art of "personality journalism" and taking exclusive interviews of celebrities before any other competitive channel. She is marked for her comprehensive and broad spectrum of interviews that presents a profound history of the personalities which impacted the later part of the 20th century. Her marathon two-hour exclusive interview with the former White House intern Monica Lewinsky in the height of the scandal rocking the popularity of Bill Clinton made broadcasting history by becoming the top ranked programming content in news to be yet aired on a particular TV channel. ("Barbara Walters Biography (1931-)b," n. d.)

In her illustrious career, Barbara Walters has received several awards. Notable among them are the President's Award in 1990 which is the topmost honor of the Overseas Press Club. In 1990, she was honored with membership of the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences Hall of Fame and also for achieving excellence in journalism -viz the Lowell Thomas Award during the same year. She was also received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the International Women's Media Foundation in the year 1991 and the Lifetime Achievement Award from the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences in 2000. She was also awarded the star of the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 2007 as also the 34 daytime Emmy awards. She has also received the honorary doctoral degrees from Universities of international repute such as Ohio State University, Sarah Lawrence College and Wheaton College. ("Barbara Walters Biography (1931-)b," n. d.)

Her inimitable style was extracting the public pretense of leaders and revealing the viewpoints, choices, individual qualities that made these personalities outstanding in their respective spheres. She cautiously cut through the style of the leader, talking, status, achievements, and idea, not just interrogating which lies at the core of the mind of the public, however even adding individual remarks and associations. Her courageous investigations, as many may name them, have ranked her at the zenith in her own domain. Moreover, it was from the stature of that edifice that she has seen the fruition of qualities of leader in a manner that is inimitable, friendly and definitely be of interest to professionals in any field. (Clarke, 2002) Her photograph is given in Exhibit -I.

A b) Oprah Winfrey and her Accomplishments:

Oprah Winfrey is among the most thriving women in media history. Overcoming a troubled childhood, she rose to become the most influential TV hostess of her own home production "The Oprah Winfrey Show." Forbes magazine rated her as the wealthiest African-American of the twentieth century and the world only Black millionaire for three years in a row. She was born in January 29, 1954 in Mississippi in a farming community. Her oratory skills were recognized from very early childhood which contributed to her immense success in later life. She started her career in 1971 engaged in radio and TV broadcasting in Nashville. During 1976, she hosted the TV chat show 'People are Talking' which was a huge success leading to her continuance with the show for eight long years. Her open and warm-hearted personal style made the show scale high in the popularity charts. ("Oprah Winfrey Biography (1954-)," n. d.)

This was a huge turning point in her career earning her instant fame leading to her accepting a role in the Spielberg film, the Color Purple. He was nominated for an Oscar honor in the Best Supporting Actress category. During 1986, she started the hugely popular 'Oprah Winfrey Show' which was broadcast in 120 channels with a captive audience of more than 10 million. The gross earning of the show touched $125 million by the end of its inaugural year, out of which Winfrey bagged $30 million. She went to become the owner of the program from ABC through her own production company Harpo which is her name Oprah spelled backwards. Winfrey also inked a multi-picture contract with Disney Productions later. ("Oprah Winfrey Biography (1954-)," n. d.)

Oprah's contribution in inspiring people as a fine human being and her philanthropic efforts are another dimension to her amazing personality that she radiates. Her contribution on a wide spectrum of activities like as a talk show hostess, owner of a production unit, angel network, book club, cinema, Broadway, promoting education of children are in itself a rarity. Some of her awards and recognition include (i) she won her inaugural Emmy Award for the topmost talk show in the year 1987. (ii) She went on receive the award for the 'National association for the Advancement of Colored People's Entertainer' for the year during 1989. She bore witness in front of the U.S. Congress and started the National Child Protection Act in 1991. (iii) in 1995, Oprah received the Emmy Award for the 'Best Talk Show' and 'Topmost Host' for two years in succession and also launched her web presence in AOL as Oprah Online in association with ABC. (iv) She became the 1st woman and the sole Black Woman of the 400 richest Americans on the Forbes list during the same year. (v) During the year1996, Oprah Winfrey was awarded the esteemed George Foster Peabody's Individual Achievement Award. (vi) She formed the Angel Network in 1997 that urged people to contribute to a charitable cause and voluntary work. (vii) 1988 was a significant year for her when she was awarded from the Daytime Emmy Awards, the 'Lifetime Achievement Award'. (viii) During 2002, she was awarded at the 2002 Emmy Award, the Bob Hope Humanitarian Award for her contribution to TV and the cine world. (ix) Time magazine in 2005 named her as one of top hundred important personalities during the twelve month period. She also bagged the ninth position in the open elections of the rich and famous Americans. (x) the international magazine 'Business Week' rated her as the first black person to be America's top 50 most generous philanthropists. (xi) She received accolades from the legendry Nelson Mandela for rising above her own troubled youth to become a backer for other people and also for making investment for the prospects of South Africa. (Manohar, 2008) Her photograph is given in Exhibit -II.

Katie Couric and her Accomplishments:

The world's highest paid TV personality, ace journalist Katie Couric took birth in Arlington, Virginia on January 7, 1957. Graduating… [END OF PREVIEW]

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