Former American Idol host, radio personality, producer and entrepreneur, Ryan Seacrest, got his start in broadcasting as a teenager in high school, interning at local Atlanta FM radio station, WSTR, on weekends. According to Ryan’s mom, he showed an interest in broadcast early when she shared that instead of playing with trucks and GI Joe like most boys his age, Ryan preferred to pretend he was interviewing celebs with a little microphone in the house.
After graduating from high school and having a few years of on-air radio hosting experience under his belt, Seacrest continued to pursue his dreams of pursuing broadcasting professionally. While enrolled at the University of Georgia, where he, of course, studied Journalism; he was again hired at a local radio station and later, instead of continuing his education, Seacrest opted to leave college in his second year when he moved cross-country to Los Angeles to pursue his broadcast dreams full-time.
Soon after landing in Hollywood, based on his Forbes profile, Seacrest would land a job as host of ESPN tv show, Radical Outdoor Challenge. During this same period, he would host three short-lived kid’s game shows. Seacrest’s big break came in 2002 when he accepted the job as co-host of new ABC talent competition, American Idol. Seacrest became the sole host after the first year when the mega-success made him a household name and recognizable star in his own right. Seacrest would eventually enter an agreement with CKK to continue hosting the wildly popular, American Idol for a reported $45 million dollars, making him the highest-paid reality TV personality at that time.
Seacrest would remain with American Idol until it ends in 2016. In addition, to hosting American Idol, Seacrest serves as on-air host of his own weekly radio top-40 music countdown show, On Air with Ryan Seacrest; as well as taking over tv hosting duties of Dick Clark’s Rockin’ New Year’s Eve program, which has been a yearly TV fixture for decades. More recently, Seacrest has joined actress Kelly Ripa as TV co-host of ABC’s Live with Kelly and Ryan.
Though his on-camera duties keep him busy, Ryan is equally busy behind the camera; acting as the producer through his Ryan Seacrest Productions of multiple successful reality TV series, including Keeping up with the Kardashians and E! News red carpet events. If that isn’t enough, Seacrest has also tried his hand at men’s fashion and entered into an exclusive contract with Macy’s to carry his classic men’s clothing line, Ryan Seacrest Distinction. Even with all of the phenomenal success that Seacrest has achieved, he still makes time to donate his efforts and fortune to philanthropic pursuits, with the creation of the Ryan Seacrest Foundation, run by his parents and sister, which primarily focuses on charitable contributions to children’s issues and organizations.
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