Ellen DeGeneres

American comedian, television host, actress, and writer (born 1968)

Ellen Lee DeGeneres (born January 26, 1958) is an American stand-up comedian, television host and actress. She is the host of the talk show The Ellen DeGeneres Show. She starred in two television sitcoms, Ellen from 1994 to 1998 and The Ellen Show from 2001 to 2002. She is seen as a very generous person when it comes to giving presents on her talk show The Ellen DeGeneres Show. She is also seen as an inspiration to people to be who you are.

Ellen DeGeneres
DeGeneres in 2011
Birth nameEllen Lee DeGeneres
Born (1958-01-26) January 26, 1958 (age 66)
Metairie, Louisiana, USA
MediumStand-up, television, film, books
Alma materUniversity of New Orleans
(m. 2008)
Partner(s)Anne Heche
Alexandra Hedison
Emmy Awards
Outstanding Writing in a Comedy Series
1997 Ellen
Outstanding Talk Show
2004 The Ellen DeGeneres Show
2005 The Ellen DeGeneres Show
2006 The Ellen DeGeneres Show
2007 The Ellen DeGeneres Show
Outstanding Talk Show Entertainment
2010 The Ellen Degeneres Show
2011 The Ellen Degeneres Show
Outstanding Special Class Writing
2005 The Ellen DeGeneres Show
2006 The Ellen DeGeneres Show
2007 The Ellen DeGeneres Show
Outstanding Talk Show Host
2005 The Ellen DeGeneres Show
2006 The Ellen DeGeneres Show
2007 The Ellen DeGeneres Show
2008 The Ellen DeGeneres Show
American Comedy Awards
Funniest Female Stand-Up Comic
Funniest Female Performer in a TV Special
1994 46th Primetime Emmy Awards
2000 Ellen DeGeneres: The Beginning
Saturn Award
Best Supporting Actress (film)
2003 Finding Nemo
Teen Choice Awards
Best Comedian

During the fourth season of Ellen in 1997, DeGeneres came out publicly as a lesbian in an appearance on The Oprah Winfrey Show. Since 2004, DeGeneres has been in a relationship with Australian actress Portia de Rossi. They were married on August 16, 2008.[1]

Early life


Ellen Lee DeGeneres was born at Ochsner Foundation Hospital in Jefferson, Louisiana,[2] She is the daughter of Elizabeth Jane "Betty" Pfeffer DeGeneres, a speech therapist, and Elliott Everett DeGeneres, an insurance agent.[3][4] She has one brother, Vance. Her brother is a musician and producer. She is of French, English, German, and Irish ancestry. She was raised as a Christian Scientist until age 13. In 1973, her parents filed for separation and were divorced the following year. Shortly after, Ellen's mother married Roy Gruessendorf, a salesman. Betty Jane and Ellen moved with Gruessendorf from the New Orleans area to Atlanta, Texas. Vance stayed with his father.

DeGeneres graduated from Atlanta High School in May 1976. Her first years of high school were at Grace King High School in Metairie, Louisiana. She moved back to New Orleans to attend the University of New Orleans, where she majored in communication studies. After one semester, she left school to do clerical work in a law firm with a cousin, Laura Gillen. She also held a job selling clothes at the chain store the Merry-Go-Round at the Lakeside Shopping Center.

Her early jobs included working at J. C. Penney,[5] being a waitress at TGI Friday's and another restaurant, a house painter, a hostess, and a bartender. She talks about her experiences as a child and at work in her comedic work.

On a February 9, 2011, episode of The Ellen DeGeneres Show, DeGeneres shared a letter from the New England Historic Genealogical Society. It said that she is Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge's 15th cousin via their shared common ancestor Thomas Fairfax.[6][7] Madonna is DeGeneres' eleventh cousin.[8]

Personal life


In 2007, Forbes said that DeGeneres's has a financial worth of about US$65 million.[9]

She is a fan of the National Football League, and has shown particular support for the New Orleans Saints and the Green Bay Packers.[10] In 2011, she attended a Saints practice dressed as Packers Hall of Famer Don Hutson.[11]

In November 2011, then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton named her a Special Envoy for Global AIDS Awareness.[12]

DeGeneres took a selfie at the 86th Academy Awards in 2014 with actors such as Brad Pitt, Angelina Jolie, Bradley Cooper, Jared Leto, and Lupita Nyong'o. It became the most retweeted image ever on Twitter, with over 3 million retweets.[13][14]

Movie roles

Year Title Role Notes
1993 Coneheads Coach
1996 Mr. Wrong Martha Alston
1998 Goodbye Lover Sgt. Rita Pompano
Dr. Dolittle Becca The Tiger (voice)
1999 EDtv Cynthia
The Love Letter Janet Hall
2003 Finding Nemo Dory (voice)
Exploring the Reef Dory (voice) Short film
2016[15] Finding Dory Dory (voice)

Television roles

Year Title Role Notes
1989 Open House Margo Van Mete 2 episodes
1992 Laurie Hill Nancy MacIntyre 3 episodes
1994–1998 Ellen Ellen Morgan 109 episodes
1995 Roseanne Dr. Whitman Episode: "The Blaming of the Shrew"
1998 Mad About You Nancy Bloom Episode: "The Finale"
2000 If These Walls Could Talk 2 Kal Segment: "2000"
2001 On the Edge Operator Segment: "Reaching Normal"
Will & Grace Sister Louise Episode: "My Uncle the Car"
2001-02 The Ellen Show Ellen Richmond 18 episodes

Roles as herself

Year Title Notes
1988 Women of the Night Comedy special
1990 Arduous Moon Short film
1991 Wisecracks Documentary
1994 Trevor Short film
1996 Ellen's Energy Adventure Short film
38th Annual Grammy Awards TV special
1997 39th Annual Grammy Awards TV special
2000 Ellen DeGeneres: The Beginning Comedy special
2001 Saturday Night Live Episode: "Ellen DeGeneres/No Doubt"
53rd Primetime Emmy Awards TV special
2003 Ellen DeGeneres: Here and Now Comedy special
MADtv Episode: "9.3"
2003-2022 The Ellen DeGeneres Show
2003 Pauly Shore Is Dead
2004 My Short Film Short film
E! True Hollywood Story
Six Feet Under Episode: "Parallel Play"
2005 Joey Episode: "Joey and the Sex Tape"
57th Primetime Emmy Awards TV special
2007 Ellen's Really Big Show
79th Academy Awards TV special
Sesame Street Episode: "The Tutu Spell"; uncredited
Forbes 20 Richest Women in Entertainment
The Bachelorette
2007–2008 American Idol 2 episodes
2008 Ellen's Even Bigger Really Big Show Comedy special
2009 Ellen's Bigger, Longer & Wider Show Comedy special
So You Think You Can Dance Guest judge; "Week 7 (July 22, 2009)"
2010 American Idol Judge; Season 9
The Simpsons Episode: "Judge Me Tender"
2014 86th Academy Awards TV special


Year Album Notes
1996 Ellen Degeneres: Taste This Stand-up comedy Live album

Awards and honors

DeGeneres at a ceremony to receive a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in September 2012
Daytime Emmy Awards
  • Outstanding Talk Show, The Ellen DeGeneres Show – 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2011
  • Outstanding Talk Show Host, The Ellen DeGeneres Show – 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008
  • Outstanding Special Class Writing, The Ellen DeGeneres Show – 2005, 2006, 2007
Emmy Awards
Mark Twain Prize for American Humor by the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts
People's Choice Awards
  • Favorite Funny Female Star – 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008
  • Favorite Talk Show Host – 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010,
  • Favorite Daytime Talk Show Host - 2012, 2013, 2014
  • Favorite Yes I Chose This Star – 2008
Nickelodeon Kids' Choice Awards
  • Favorite Voice from an Animated Movie – 2004
Tulane University President's Medal
Women in Film Crystal + Lucy Awards
Hollywood Walk of Fame


  1. "DeGeneres and de Rossi wed". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 2008-08-18.
  2. Iannucci, Lisa (2008-11-30). Ellen DeGeneres: A Biography: A Biography. ABC-CLIO. ISBN 978-0-313-35371-0.
  3. "Ellen DeGeneres profile at". Filmreference.com. Retrieved 2014-01-09.
  4. DeGeneres, Betty (2000). Love, Ellen: A Mother/Daughter Journey. HarperCollins Publishers. pp. 22, 27. ISBN 0-688-17688-7.
  5. D'Innocenzio, Anne (2012-02-02). "Penney hopes Ellen DeGeneres can boost its image". Asheville Citizen-Times. Associated Press. Retrieved 2014-01-09.
  6. "Ellen's Royal Relationship". YouTube. 2011-02-09. Retrieved 2014-01-09.
  7. Stossel, John (July 23, 2013). "US, Commonwealth hail birth of Britain's royal baby". Fox News. Paris. AFP. Retrieved January 9, 2014.
  8. TheEllenShow (13 October 2010). "Lisa Kudrow Explores Ellen's Family Tree" – via YouTube.
  9. Lea Goldman and Kiri Blakeley (2007-01-18). "20 Richest Women in Entertainment". Forbes. Retrieved 2014-01-09.
  10. "Go Green Bay!". The Ellen DeGeneres Show. Archived from the original on 2011-11-19. Retrieved 2014-01-09.
  11. "DeGeneres joins Saints at practice". National Football League. Retrieved 2014-01-09.
  12. Michaud, Chris (November 9, 2011). "Ellen DeGeneres named global envoy for AIDS awareness". Reuters. Archived from the original on October 5, 2015. Retrieved August 31, 2017.
  13. "Selfie at Oscars breaks retweet record". BBC News. March 3, 2014. Retrieved March 3, 2014.
  14. DeGeneres, Ellen (March 2, 2014). "If only Bradley's arm was longer. Best photo ever. #oscars". Twitter. Retrieved March 3, 2014.
  15. Keegan, Rebecca (18 September 2013). "'The Good Dinosaur' moved to 2015, leaving Pixar with no 2014 film". The Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 9 January 2014.
  16. Trescott, Jacqueline, "Ellen DeGeneres named Mark Twain Prize recipient", Washington Post (May 15, 2012)
  17. "Ellen DeGeneres to Headline 'Katrina Class' Commencement". Archived from the original on 2010-06-07.
  18. "Past Recipients - Crystal Award". Women in Film. Archived from the original on 2011-08-20.
  19. "Ellen DeGeneres lands Walk of Fame honour". Hindustan Times. 23 August 2012. Archived from the original on 14 April 2014. Retrieved 10 January 2014.