Oprah Once Revealed 'Sweet Revenge' She Got on Ex Boss Years after He Refused to Raise Her Salary

Even though Oprah Winfrey is one of the most powerful women in the entertainment industry nowadays, she had to “swallow a lot” when her career started.

Before hosting the “Oprah Winfrey Show” in Chicago from 1986 to 2011, Oprah was one of the co-hosts of the “People Are Talking” show next to Richard Sher.

During a 2014 interview at Stanford University, she revealed that even though it was a quite important project, she started feeling uncomfortable after learning that Richard was making more money than her for the same job.

“Why should you make as much money as he? He has children. Do you have children?”


While asking her boss at the time for more money was intimidating, Oprah decided to do it and “stand up for” herself. Once she was in front of her boss, she said:

“Richard’s making more money than I am and I don’t think that’s fair because we’re doing the same job, we sit on the same show.”

Her boss, however, didn’t even pay attention to her words and asked back:

“Why should you make as much money as he? He has children. Do you have children?”


Oprah said no, and the man kept listing the things that Richard had to pay, including college education and home expenses, as the reason why he was making more money than her, who was in her late 20s and didn’t “need” as much money.

Instead of fighting, Oprah simply thanked her boss for his time and left as she knew he wouldn’t listen. Years later, when she was hosting her own show, the star took sweet revenge against pay inequality.


“I was making a lot of money, and my producers were still getting the same salary. I went to my boss at the time, and I said, ‘Everybody needs a raise,’” Oprah told Time.

Her boss at the time asked her why a “bunch of girls” needed more money. Since Oprah was in a position of power, she stood firm and said that if her producers’ pay didn’t increase, she wouldn’t host the show again. The man, of course, raised the salary of the “bunch of girls.”

Oprah’s story about her boss begins soon after the 14-minute mark.

“I think there are a lot of us of my generation who swallowed a lot. I always knew that there would come a time when I would be in a position where I wouldn’t have to swallow it,” pointed out Oprah.

It is not the only aspect of her past that Oprah has shared. When she was in her early 20s, some of her bosses would label her as a “terrible” news anchor.

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