Emmy Award-winning comedian, best-selling author, reality star and actress Kathy Griffin has yet to meet a celebrity that she won't mock in the name of humor. She's got a gift for making fun of her own life, too, all the way back to her birth on November 4, 1960, in the Chicago burbs. This famous funny lady is also a highly recognized advocate for the LGBT community.
Comedian Kathleen "Kathy" Mary Griffin was born on November 4, 1960, in Oak Park, Illinois. She is the youngest child of John Griffin, an electronic store manager, and Maggie Griffin, a hospital administrator. With bright red hair and freckles, she often got teased for her looks growing up, but quickly learned how to throw back verbal barbs.
Griffin took to the stage early on, including her fair share of high school theater productions. After graduation and some junior college, the showbiz hopeful headed to Los Angeles; she studied acting at the Lee Strasberg Theatre Institute. Her comedy calling motivated her to join the famous Groundlings theater troupe. On the side, she nabbed guest-starring roles on sitcoms as well as minor movie parts.
Tired of waiting for something substantial to happen on the career front, Griffin created her own one-woman show, "Cup of Chat." The move paid off and helped her to land her own HBO comedy special in 1995. The following year, Griffin's professional luck continued when she was cast as Brooke Shields's sidekick, Vickie Groener, on the sitcom Suddenly Susan. When the show ended four seasons later, there was no gig this performer would pass up, including a stint on Hollywood Squares, an Eminem music video and a role on Celebrity Mole: Hawaii, where she won the season.
Later Career, Awards, and Controversy
Griffin's shameless self-promotion made her personal and professional life perfect fodder for her own reality series, which debuted in 2005 on Bravo. Airing for six seasons, Kathy Griffin: My Life on the D-List won the comic two Emmys, but also got Griffin into some hot water over her 2007 acceptance speech. On the podium, she said, "Suck it, Jesus, this award is my God now!"
It wasn't the first time the actress caused an outrage. Griffin has been banned from many programs for her non-filtered commentary. However, it didn't halt her career from progressing, with Griffin hosting her own talk show, releasing two Grammy Award-nominated comedy albums and writing a best-selling autobiography, Official Book Club Selection: A Memoir According to Kathy Griffin.
Among her other notable professional highlights, Griffin has guest co-hosted on The View, as well as co-hosted CNN's New Year's Eve Broadcast with her friend anchor Anderson Cooper.
In 2014 Griffin hosted the 41st Daytime Emmy Awards, which for the very first time aired on a live-streaming format. Her performance was generally lauded by critics.
Despite her life appearing to be mostly laughs, Griffin had heartache behind the scenes after discovering that her husband, Matthew Moline, had been stealing money from her bank accounts during their five years of marriage. Surprisingly, Griffin went on to have a relationship with billionaire and Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak. After their breakup, the 50-something actress took the route of seeing younger men, namely Levi Johnston, the ex-boyfriend of Bristol Palin, whom she joked was her boyfriend. In March 2011 Griffin announced she was dating NFL-er/Old Spice spokesperson Isaiah Mustafa and later got involved with her tour manager. Currently, she is seeing Randy Bick, a marketing executive, 18 years her junior.
No matter what relationship, career demands or controversy Griffin is juggling, she always makes time to do advocacy work on behalf of the LGBT community. It earned her a Vanguard Award at the 2009 GLAAD Media Awards and two years later, The Trevor Project bestowed Griffin as a Lifetime Honoree. She was also one of the grand marshals of the Las Vegas Pride Parade in 2012. As Griffin boasted in a newspaper interview that same year, "Honey, every day of my life is Gay Pride."
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