19 Facts About Phil Donahue


Phil Donahue's shows have often focused on issues that divide liberals and conservatives in the United States, such as abortion, consumer protection, civil rights and war issues.


Phil Donahue briefly hosted a talk show on MSNBC from July 2002 to March 2003.


Phil Donahue is one of the most influential talk show hosts and has been called the "king of daytime talk".


In 1953, Phil Donahue was a member of the first graduating class of St Edward High School, an all-boys college preparatory Catholic private high school run by the Congregation of Holy Cross in suburban Lakewood, Ohio.


Phil Donahue graduated from the University of Notre Dame, which is run by the Congregation of Holy Cross, with a Bachelor of Business Administration degree in 1957.


Phil Donahue began his career in 1957 as a production assistant at KYW radio and television when that station was in Cleveland.


Phil Donahue got a chance to become an announcer one day when the regular announcer failed to show up.


Phil Donahue moved on to become a stringer for the CBS Evening News and later, an anchor of the morning newscast at WHIO-TV in Dayton, Ohio, where his interviews with Jimmy Hoffa and Billie Sol Estes were picked up nationally.


In Dayton, Donahue interviewed presidential candidate John F Kennedy, late night talk show host Johnny Carson, human rights activist Malcolm X and Vietnam war opponents including Jerry Rubin.


In Chicago and New York City, Phil Donahue interviewed Elton John, heavyweight boxing champions Muhammad Ali and Joe Frazier, and author and political activist Noam Chomsky.


On November 6,1967, Donahue left WHIO, moving his talk program to television with The Phil Donahue Show on WLWD, in Dayton.


But, in January 1970, The Phil Donahue Show entered nationwide syndication.


Phil Donahue's syndicated show moved from Dayton, Ohio, to Chicago in 1974; then in 1984, he moved the show to New York City, where the show was shot at a studio at 30 Rockefeller Plaza, to be near his wife Marlo Thomas.


In July 2002, Phil Donahue returned to television after seven years of retirement to host a show called Donahue on MSNBC.


In 2006, Phil Donahue served as co-director with independent filmmaker Ellen Spiro for the feature documentary film Body of War.


Phil Donahue was interviewed for the documentary film, Finding Vivian Maier, about the posthumously recognized American street photographer of that name, an acquaintance of his from the 1970s.


On May 24 and May 25,2016, Phil Donahue spoke at Ralph Nader's "Breaking Through Power" conference, at DAR Constitution Hall in Washington, DC.


Phil Donahue was widely criticized for his discussion of child molestation by Catholic priests in 1988, when his was the first national program to cover the issue.


Phil Donahue returned to her native New Mexico, remarried and retired from public view.