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Shailene Woodley


Bill Maher


Sonny Bono

Chaz Bono Biography


Home > Actors > B > Bono, Chaz > Biography


Birth Name: Chaz Bono
Born: 03/04/1969
Birth Place: Los Angeles, California, USA


Born March 4, 1969 in Los Angeles, Chastity Sun Bono was the only child born to entertainers Sonny Bono and Cher, famous at the time as the singing duo Sonny & Cher. Named for a 1969 film produced by her father and starring her mother, Bono was in the spotlight from birth, appearing frequently on her parents' popular variety series "The Sonny and Cher Show" (CBS, 1971-74). She came out as a lesbian to her parents at 18 and then publicly via The Advocate in 1995. Although she dabbled in music, as an adult Bono mostly eschewed an entertainment career, focusing on working as a writer and LGBT activist, serving as a spokesperson for the Human Rights Campaign and as Entertainment Media Director for the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD). Sadly, Bono and her Republican congressman father were estranged due to political differences when he died in January 1998 from injuries suffered during a skiing accident in Northern California, but she was able to gain the full support of her mother, who became a staunch LGBT ally.

In 2006, Bono appeared on the third season of "Celebrity Fit Club" (VH1, 2005-2010) and served as a team captain for the weight-loss series. After extensive therapy and soul-searching, Bono began the physical and social process of gender transitioning from female to male in 2009. On May 7, 2010, his legal transition was completed and he took the name "Chaz Salvatore Bono" in tribute to his late father. Publicly stating a desire to serve as an ambassador and advocate for the trans community the way he already had for the LGBT community, Bono made the acclaimed documentary "Becoming Chaz" (OWN, 2011) and published Transition: The Story of How I Became A Man, his third memoir, following 1998's Family Outing: A Guide to the Coming Out Process for Gays, Lesbians and Their Families and 2003's The End of Innocence. Bono made history with the revolutionary news that he had joined the cast of "Dancing with the Stars" (ABC, 2005- ), sparking a national conversation about an underrepresented community.