Throughout a long and varied career, cultural icon Jerry Springer can claim many labels In addition to “host”: two-term mayor of Cincinnati, political pundit, lawyer, award-winning newscaster, country recording artist, TV personality, movie star, Broadway actor and talk radio host among them.
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The multi-faceted Springer, with a passion for politics, was named Democrat Of The Year from Ohio and served as a Delegate-at-Large at the 2004 Democratic National Convention. Springer is active in voter registration and other populist causes.
A regular guest on the talk circuit, Springer has appeared many shows, including The Tonight Show, Late Night with David Letterman, Late Night with Conan O’Brien, MSNBC’s Hardball with Chris Matthews, The View and many other popular shows.
Today, because of the continued popularity of his show, Springer is a sought after guest speaker on college campuses in the U.S. and abroad. In recent years, he has appeared at Yale, Harvard, Georgetown, University of Miami, USC, San Francisco State, Emory, George Washington, American University and many others. Springer has been a featured guest at Oxford University in England, breaking all attendance records for an invited celebrity speaker in 1999 and 2000.
Ringmaster, a book written by Springer, hit store shelves in November 1998 and shared Springer’s personal look into his show and remembrances from his childhood and professional career. Also in November 1998, Springer made his first venture into feature films starring in Ringmaster, a fictionalized chronicle of a television talk show. In 1999, Springer played himself in the hit movie Austin Powers 2: The Spy Who Shagged Me.
During the 2003 Cannes Film Festival, Springer appeared to promote his star turn in the feature film Citizen Verdict. In the movie, Springer, co-starring with Armand Assante and Roy Scheider, plays the producer of a courtroom reality TV show.
Springer became a featured character in The Simpsons 1998 Halloween Special and played himself on The X-Files. He has also graced the covers of Rolling Stone, Esquire and New York Magazine. Barbara Walters asked Springer to be part of her year-end 10 Most Fascinating People of 1998 special for ABC.
Springer has hosted a popular U.K. variety show, Late Night with Jerry Springer. Additionally, he hosted another late night variety show in South Africa on M-Net. The latter program, broadcast to more than 40 African nations, featured interviews with celebrities, a monologue and skits in front of a studio audience, and ranked among the most popular in South Africa. All proceeds from the South African show went to AIDS charities.
In addition to recording a CD single in Nashville titled “Dr. Talk” and another CD soon to be released, Springer has twice served as the master of ceremonies for the Miss World Pageant and added an appearance on Broadway to his varied list of achievements, starring for a week in the production of the Rocky Horror Show Live.
Born in London in 1944 just after his family fled from the Holocaust, Jerry Springer immigrated at age 5 to New York City with his family. He can still recall the sense of awe and anticipation he felt when he first saw the Statue of Liberty and passed through the gates of freedom on Ellis Island. In America, they could live without persecution. Springer is dedicated to upholding the freedoms guaranteed by the Constitution. His family saw firsthand what happens when those freedoms are denied. After earning a bachelor’s degree in political science from Tulane University, Springer received his law degree from Northwestern University in 1968. His first job after law school was working as one of Sen. Robert F. Kennedy’s presidential campaign aides. After Kennedy’s assassination, Springer joined a law firm and moved into the political arena himself.
He spearheaded the effort to lower the voting age from 21 to 18, which culminated with his Senate Judiciary Committee testimony supporting ratification of the 26th Amendment to the Constitution. He was elected to Cincinnati’s Council-at-Large in 1971, serving five successive terms. In 1977, Springer was elected mayor of Cincinnati by the largest plurality in the city’s history. At age 33, he was one of the country’s youngest mayors. Five years later, Springer launched his broadcasting career as a political reporter and commentator on Cincinnati’s WLWT-TV. He became anchor and managing editor in 1984, and was Cincinnati’s top-rated news anchor until he relinquished the post in January 1993. During his tenure, Springer received seven Emmy Awards for his nightly commentaries, the forerunner to his “Final Thought,” and was voted television’s best anchor for five consecutive years by readers of Cincinnati Magazine.
Springer is perhaps most proud of his involvement with ‘Cincinnati Reaches Out,’ contributing on-site reporting from Ethiopia and Sudan, where he documented the effort to provide assistance to famine-stricken Africans.
With the debut of Springer on the Radio on January 17, 2005, Jerry adds radio talk show host to his resume. For too long, the radio airwaves have been dominated by conservative talk. Jerry is excited by the opportunity to offer a different voice.
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