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It’s official! The Oprah Winfrey Show, after 25 successful years, will air it’s last show later on today. She has single-handedly changed the game when it comes to daytime talk shows, branding, and international media, while helping to inspire people from all walks of life.

Earlier today, Oprah sat down for her exit interview, and reflected on initially wanting to be on Good Morning America, who she wished she would have interviewed, why her show connected so well with people, and what she will miss the most about The Oprah Winfrey Show. Check out the highlights below:

On starting out

I often say, “Nobody but Jesus could have made this happen for me.” I had no stylist, I had no publicist, I had no marketing savvy. I was the most niave in terms of how things operated, how the business operated.

On Starting Out & Wanting to Be on Good Morning America

I asked would they please just send my tape to “Good Morning America” so that I could substitute for Joan London when she went on vacation. My agent at the time said, “No, that’s not going to happen.” Everybody told me when I was in the process of moving [to Chicago] that I would fail, there’s no way you’ll succeed. Gayle is the only person who said, “I think you can beat Donahue” and I thought that was the most ridiculous thing I’ve every heard. Well, that is never going to happen!

The intern who started the same day I did (the day I did my audition), that intern ended up being a publicist for me because when I was getting mail and I couldn’t handle all of the mail I said, “Alice, I’ll pay you a dollar a letter.” After it got to be like a couple hundred letters a week, I was like, “I can’t pay you a dollar anymore.” So when I would get asked to do things, I would say “Alice, what do you think? Should I do Good Housekeeping, should I do ladies Home Journal?” and Alice would go “Let me call my mom.” Alice would literally get on the phone and all her mom. “My mom said you should do good housekeeping because they have the seal of approval.”

On Connecting With People

We wanted to create a show that let people know that they were not alone. We wanted to tell the stories of people like ourselves so that I can see my story in you and I could feel your struggles in my own through you.

On What She Will Miss About the Show

I will miss the connection to a community that really embraced me in such a way that allowed this national platform of “The Oprah Winfrey Show” to become what it is. So, I’m grateful for the fact that we were right here at that particular time and it was these people and this audience that made this happen. Source: Necole Bitchie

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