After months of back-stabbing, feuding and Geraldo Rivera taking his shirt off, Leeza Gibbons finally emerged as the 2015 winner of "Celebrity Apprentice." With her name buzzing around NBC and the "Today Show" this morning, many may be wondering who the woman that beat one of America’s most decorated journalists in the boardroom is.
Below are some helpful facts about Gibbons to help you get to know the Season 14 winner of Donald Trump’s “Celebrity Apprentice:”
Gibbons is an Emmy Award winning entertainment news host. She got her start early on co-hosting local segments for PM Magazine in Texas. She spent the 1980s in local news before making the big leap to “Entertainment Tonight” and “Extra” from 1993-2000. Around that same time, she became the host of her very own daytime talk show called “Leeza” on NBC. She would later go on to host “Leeza Gibbons Hollywood Confidential” (formerly “Blockbuster Top 25 Countdown with Leeza Gibbons”) where she would break down the days' hottest stories form the entertainment industry.
It wasn’t until 2013 that she won her first Daytime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lifestyle/Travel Host for her work on PBS’ “My Generation.” However, you may remember her face from small roles as television reporter Jess Perkins in “RoboCop” and “RoboCop 2.”
Much like her finalist competitor, Rivera, she’s been in the TV news game for quite some time, just on a different beat. She stepped away from TV in 2009 when she released her first book, and became a New York Times Best-Selling author for her self recreation book “Take 2.”
Gibbons first made a name for herself in the Alzheimer’s care community with the release of her book “Take Your Oxygen First: Protecting Your Health and Happiness While Caring for a Loved One with Memory Loss.” In it, she tells the story of her family’s personal struggle with the disease, which eventually took her mother’s life. From the get-go she said that she was on “Celebrity Apprentice” to fulfill a promise she made to her mom to tell her story to as many people who would listen.
In 2002 she started her charity “Leeza’s Care Connection.” Its mission is to bridge the gap between Alzheimer’s patients and the caregivers, be they medical professionals or family members. The charity also does a lot of work for people with other types of chronic illnesses. According to her bio on the “Celebrity Apprentice” website, she did this to create a place that she wished she had when her mother was struggling through her diagnosis.
In total, her time on “Celebrity Apprentice” helped her raise $714,000 for Leeza’s Care Connection, thanks to her stunning victories on various tasks as well as bringing home the grand $250,000 prize.
Many who watched the finale may remember a man approaching her just after her name was announced as the Season 14 winner. That man was her husband Steven Fenton. The two married in 2011, Gibbon's fourth marriage since 1980. She is a mother with three children from two of her previous marriages (two boys and one girl). Now that her time in New York working for Donald Trump has come to a close, she’ll be returning home to them in Los Angeles.