Barbara WaltersTV Personality
Born: 25 September 1929
Birthplace: Boston, Massachusetts
Best known as: 20/20 veteran and host of ABC's The View
A co-host and co-creator of daytime TV's The View, Barbara Walters is a veteran broadcaster who made her name in the 1970s with interviews of world leaders and A-list celebrities. Walters's long career in national television began in the late 1950s. She spent fifteen years (1961-76) with NBC as a correspondent and co-host for The Today Show, then jumped to ABC News in 1976 to become the first woman to co-anchor a nightly news show (her on-air partner was veteran newsman Harry Reasoner). Although her stint as a news co-anchor was a flop, Walters became one of the most high-profile women in television broadcasting, a pioneer in a field dominated by men. She had a long run on ABC's 20/20 (1979-2004), and a popular series of The Barbara Walters Specials, in which she interviewed personalities from politics and entertainment, including: Menachem Begin and Anwar Sadat; Monica Lewinsky; Fidel Castro; Demi Moore; George Clooney; and the Dalai Lama. Since leaving 20/20 Walters has worked on The View, occasional interview scoops and her annual review of newsmakers, The 10 Most Fascinating People.
Extra credit: During the early seasons of Saturday Night Live, comedian Gilda Radner parodied Walters in the form of a character named "Babwa Wawa," a play on Walters's name that mocked her distinctive style of speech.
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