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Glenn Beck Biography

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Birth Name: Glenn Beck
Born: 02/10/1964
Birth Place: Mount Vernon, Washington, USA

Glenn Lee Beck was born on Feb. 10, 1964 in Mount Vernon, WA to William and Mary Beck. He was raised in a Catholic family and attended the Immaculate Conception Catholic School in Mount Vernon. After Beck's parents divorced in 1977 due to his mother's alcoholism and manic fits of depression, he and his older sister moved with their mother to Sumner, WA. Tragedy struck early for Beck; when he was 13 years old, his mother drowned herself in a bay near Tacoma. Around the same time, Beck won a contest to become a guest disc jockey for his hometown radio station, KBRC. Shortly after, he held three radio jobs - at a Christian station, a rock station and a country station - but he was fired from all three jobs on the same day he turned 14. After graduating from high school, Beck crisscrossed the country, working in various Top 40 radio stations in Utah, Arizona, Washington D.C. and Connecticut. While his career soared, Beck struggled in his personal life. In 1986, he married his first wife, Claire. They divorced in 1990, ironically, as a result of Beck's alcohol and drug abuse problem. At age 30, Beck became so consumed by his substance abuse problem that he lost all passion for music and was relegated to the smallest radio markets.

In 2000, after spending many years in a recovery program, Beck found a new religion by converting to Mormonism, remarried, and started pursuing the increasingly volatile talk radio universe. He began hosting his own talk radio show on WFLA-AM in Tampa, FL. With his brazen on-air personality and strong conservative viewpoint in a heavily conservative state, Beck took the station to the No. 1 spot during his first year on the job. Premiere Radio Networks took notice and in 2002, launched "The Glenn Beck Program" on 47 stations. Beck's listeners saw him as a conservative hero who was big on politics and traditional family values. With a weekly average of nine million listeners, Beck's program was the third highest-ranked talk show in America, behind fellow conservatives Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity. On his fast-paced show, Beck earned legions of fans and critics for his no-holds-barred statements, including calling former president Jimmy Carter "a waste of skin" and for fantasizing on the air about strangling documentary filmmaker Michael Moore to death.

The controversial talk-show host gained an even bigger following on CNN's "Glenn Beck" (2006-09), a nightly news commentary that featured what Beck claimed was his hilarious take on the top stories from world events, politics and pop culture. Following the success of his CNN nightly show, Beck debuted his second self-titled topical talk show (2009- ) on the Fox News Channel to more than two million viewers. While the show enjoyed high ratings, it started losing key advertisers like Proctor & Gamble, SC Johnson, and Geico after Beck's comment that President Barack Obama was a "racist with a deep-seated hatred for white people." Amidst the controversy, Beck amassed quite a fortune for all his work; in 2010, listed his earnings at $32 million. On top of his television and radio gigs, Beck was also the founder and editor of Fusion magazine, which became popular for its not-so-subtle section titled "future obituaries" of high-ranking liberals, celebrities, and terrorists. Beck's company, Mercury Radio Arts, published his books - he wrote five New York Times bestsellers including 2008's The Christmas Sweater and 2009's An Inconvenient Book: Real Solutions to the World's Biggest Problems - ran a lucrative website, and managed his national tours.

Beck's targets were not limited to just politicians and the liberal media. In March 2010, during a press junket for the film "Avatar," renowned director Cameron lashed out at Beck, calling him a "f*cking assh*le" and adding that Beck was "dangerous" because "his ideas are dangerous." Cameron was counter-reacting to Beck's reaction to his documentary "The Lost Tomb of Jesus" (2007), a film that cast doubt on the resurrection of Jesus Christ. According to a CNN transcript, Beck - who was then a talk-show host for the cable news channel - said, "Many people believe James Cameron officially tossed his hat in the ring today and is officially running for anti-Christ." Beck was unapologetic and gleefully explained on his Fox News program that he made those remarks as a joke. In April 2010, Beck asked his fans to vote on the cover image for his book The Overton Window, an apocalyptic political thriller inspired by the works of Ayn Rand. The images ranged from a gun-toting Statue of Liberty, to a Colossus of Rhodes-esque statue that towered over the New York skyline. Throughout 2010 and into the following year, Beck continued to make headlines and find himself the butt of every late night comic's joke. The more bizarre Beck's on-air rants became, the less entranced became advertisers, who steadily began jumping ship as Beck's ratings began to plummet. In April 2011, Beck announced that he was leaving Fox News to concentrate on producing various projects for Fox and other platforms, via his Mercury Radio Arts company.