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Wendy Williams is a radio DJ and TV talk show host known for her no-nonsense attitude and brash on-air personality.
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Modeling her style after shock-jock Howard Stern—even dubbing herself "The Queen of All Media" in homage to Stern's title "King of All Media"—Williams proved unafraid to weigh in on the lives of her listeners, who numbered around 12 million. For those who called in, Wendy offered up advice and tough love.
But it wasn't just with her fans that Williams exercised honesty. Her guests, too—some of them celebrity heavy-weights—were never coddled. In 2003,
Willliams and Whitney Houston went at it on-air as the show's host asked the singer about her drug history. Williams later patched things up with Houston, but made no apologies for her interview style. "My bark is worse than my bite...by being tall and outgoing, people mistake that for being overpowering, overbearing, loud and being a bully," Williams later told The New York Times.
Williams leveraged her success on the radio into other opportunities, authoring a pair of New York Times bestsellers (Wendy's Got the Heat and the Wendy Willliam Experience); writing a few novels; and landing on television. She hosted her own show on VH1 and, in the fall of 2007, made appearances on NBC's Today Show to dish on the latest celebrity gossip.
In the summer of 2008, her television exposure enhanced significantly with a trial run of BET's The Wendy Williams Show. The program's ratings motivated network executives to greenlight a full-scale run of the show the following summer. In November 2008, while waiting for the premiere of her new program, Williams was inducted into the National Radio Hall of Fame.
On July 13, 2009, Williams debuted her new television program. The show drew from her radio show's format, mixing in celebrity dirt, celebrity interviews and advice to audience members. Several weeks later, on July 31, 2009, she announced her retirement from radio. On November 19, 2009, Williams' producer announced that the show was confirmed for the 2011-12 season.
Williams lives in northern New Jersey with her husband and their son, Kevin, Jr., who was born 1999.
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