Betty White Ludden (born Betty Marion White; January 17, 1922 in Oak Park, Illinois), known professionally as Betty White, is an American actress, author, producer, radio host and television personality.
In 2013, the Guinness World Records awarded White with having the longest television career for a female entertainer. To contemporary audiences, White is best known for her roles as Sue Ann Nivens on The Mary Tyler Moore Show (1973–77) and Rose Nylund on The Golden Girls (1985–92). The Writers Guild of America has included both sitcoms in its list of the 101 Best Written TV Series Of All Time. Since the death of co-star Rue McClanahan in 2010, she is the only surviving Golden Girl.
Since 2010 she has starred as Elka Ostrovsky in the TV Land sitcom Hot in Cleveland, for which she has won two consecutive Screen Actors Guild Awards, presented the practical-joke show Betty White's Off Their Rockers, which resulted in three consecutive Emmy nominations and became the oldest person to guest-host Saturday Night Live, a performance which was a major ratings success and earned her a Primetime Emmy award.
Regarded as a pioneer of television, White was one of the first women to have creative control both in front of and behind the camera; and is recognized as the first woman to produce a sitcom. which contributed to her receiving the honorary title as the Mayor of Hollywood in 1955. In a career that has spanned more than 70 years, White has received 23 Emmy nominations with six wins as well as three American Comedy Awards, three Screen Actors Guild awards, a BAFTA, a Grammy and four Golden Globes nominations. With 18 Emmy acting nominations, White is second only to Cloris Leachman as the most nominated actress in the award's history.
She is also the only woman to have received an Emmy in all performing comedic categories and also holds the record for longest span between Emmy nominations for performances—her first was in 1951 and her most recent was in 2011, a span of 60 years.. She is also the oldest winner of a competitive Grammy Award and the oldest nominee of a performing Emmy.
A staple guest of many American game shows such as Password, Match Game and The $25,000 Pyramid. White has been dubbed the 'First Lady of Game Shows' and became the first woman to receive an Emmy Award for Outstanding Game Show Host in 1983 for the show Just Men! Due to her pioneering efforts in early television and her acting legacy, the American Comedy Awards, the Screen Actors Guild, the Television Critics Association, and the British Academy of Film and Television Arts have all awarded White with lifetime achievement awards, recognizing her contribution to television.
White has also been formally inducted into the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Hall of Fame and has received the Disney Legends award. White is also known for her animal rights activism. She has donated tens of thousands of dollars to the Los Angeles Zoo and has been a member of the board of directors since 1974.
In 1945, White married Dick Barker, a U.S. Army Air Corps pilot. The marriage was short-lived. In 1947, she married Lane Allen, a Hollywood agent. This marriage ended in divorce in 1949. On June 14, 1963, White married television host and personality Allen Ludden, whom she had met on his game show Password as a celebrity guest in 1961, and her legal name was changed to Betty White Ludden.
He proposed to White at least twice before she accepted. The couple appeared together in an episode of The Odd Couple featuring Felix's and Oscar's appearance on Password. Ludden appeared as a guest panelist on Match Game, with White sitting in the audience. (She was prompted to criticize one of Ludden's wrong answers on camera during an episode of Match Game '74.)
The two appeared together on the Match Game panel in 1974, 1975 and 1980. Allen Ludden died from stomach cancer on June 9, 1981, in Los Angeles. They had no children together, though she is stepmother to his three children from his first marriage. White has not remarried since Ludden's death. In an interview with Larry King, when asked whether or not she would remarry, she replied by saying "Once you've had the best, who needs the rest?" When asked about her real-life heroes, White told Vanity Fair, "Charles Darwin".
White is a practicing member of the Unity Church. She is also a registered Democrat. She endorsed President Barack Obama in 2012 saying she "likes how he represents us". In a 2011 interview, White said that she always knew her close friend Liberace was homosexual and that she sometimes accompanied him to premieres.
A supporter of homosexual rights, White said that "If a couple has been together all that time – and there are homosexual relationships that are more solid than some heterosexual ones—I think it's fine if they want to get married. I don't know how people can get so anti-something. Mind your own business, take care of your affairs, and don't worry about other people so much".
Source, modified: http://wikipedia.org
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