Betty White Biography

Betty White is an American, actress, author, animal rights activist and comedienne. This biography profiles her childhood, life, works, achievements and timeline.

Quick Facts

Birthday: January 17, 1922

Nationality: American

Famous: Quotes By Betty White Actresses

Sun Sign: Capricorn

Age: 96 Years

Also Known As: Betty Marion White, Betty White Ludden, Gerrie, Betty Marion White Ludden

Born in: Oak Park, Illinois, U.S.

Famous as: Actress, Writer, Comedienne

Height: 1.63 m


Spouse/Ex-: Allen Ludden, Dick Barker, Lane Allen

father: Horace Lawrence White

mother: Tess Curtis White

religion: Unity Church

Ideology: Democrats

City, States, Provinces & Districts: Illinois

Net worth: $45 Million as of Jan 17, 2017

More Facts

education: Beverly Hills High School, Horace Mann School

Cite This
Continue Reading Below

Betty White is an American, actress, author, animal rights activist and comedienne. She was also a producer, a television personality and an animal rights activist. She was one of the pioneer American women who played a role both behind and in front of a camera during the early days of television shows in the country. She received the honorary title of ‘Mayor of Hollywood’ for producing a sitcom as she was the first ever female to do so. She has received a large number of awards for her performances in sitcoms, game shows and television shows based on comedy. She became famous for her role in game shows and was dubbed as the ‘First Lady of Game Shows”. Her career as singer, actor, host, and producer was spread over a period of more than 75 years making her the longest serving female personality in the world of entertainment. Her interest in acting developed during her school days though she started out to be a writer. From reading commercials on the radio channels, she went on to become an important entertainment personality in America.

Recommended Lists:

Recommended Lists:

Continue Reading Below
Betty White
Childhood & Early Life
  • Betty White was born as Betty Marion White on January 12, 1922 in Oak Park, Illinois, USA. She was the only child of her mother Christine Tess and father Horace Logan White, an executive in a lighting company.
  • She studied at the Horace Mann School, Beverly Hills, and the Beverly Hills High School.
    Continue Reading Below
  • Betty White joined the radio for reading commercials and playing small parts in plays after being rejected by movie companies.
  • Three months after graduation in 1939, she made her debut appearance on television by singing songs from the opera called ‘The Merry Widow’.
  • In 1940, she acted in plays ‘The Great Gildersleeve’, ‘Blondie’ and ‘This is Your FBI’ and started her own radio program called ‘The Betty White Show’.
  • In 1949, she co-hosted the daily live show ‘Hollywood on Television’ with Al Jarvis and continued for four years.
  • All through the 1950s she went on performing in TV commercials which included advertisements like ‘Dr. Ross Dog Food’ and others.
  • She founded her production company ‘Bandy Productions’ in 1952 and created the comedy production ‘Life with Elizabeth’ in which she played the lead role.
  • The show ‘Life with Elizabeth’ was syndicated from 1952 to 1955 which gave twenty-eight year old White full control on both sides of the camera.
    Continue Reading Below
  • In 1954, she produced and briefly hosted the daily talk show ‘The Betty White Show’ on NBC. In 1970s, she produced a sitcom of the same name.
  • Starting from 1955 up to 1975 she was a commentator on the ‘Tournament of Roses Parade’ show with co-host Lorne Greene.
  • From 1957 to 1958, she played the role of Vicki Angel in the sitcom ‘Date with the Angels’.
  • She appeared on the big screen for the first time in 1962 in the lead role in the feature film drama ‘Advise & Consent’.
  • In 1963, she was co-host of the game show ‘Password’ with Allen Ludden whom she married later.
  • She made a guest appearance on ‘The Mary Tyler Moore Show’ in 1973 in the role of Sue Ann Nivens.
  • In 1985, she appeared in her biggest hit show ‘The Golden Girls’.
    Continue Reading Below
  • In 1999, she appeared in a supportive role in the monster film ‘Lake Placid’.
  • Her other films were ‘Hard Rain’, ‘Dennis the Menace Strikes Again’ and ‘Bringing Down the House’ which premiered during the late 1990s and the early 2000s.
  • In 2004, she appeared as a guest star in ‘The Practice’, in ‘Comedy Central Roast of William Shatner’ in 2006 and ‘The Oprah Winfrey Show’ in 2008.
  • She starred in ‘TV Land Awards’ in 2007 and appeared in ‘Boston Legal’ from 2005 to 2008.
  • She appeared in ‘The Bold and the Beautiful’ in 2007, 2008 and 2009.
  • Her instincts as an animal lover became evident in the show ‘PetMeds’ in 2007.
  • She acted in the film ‘The Proposal’ in 2009 and provided the background voice in a film named ‘Ponyo’.
    Continue Reading Below
  • She played a part in the TV show ‘Hot Cleveland’ and appeared as a guest in ‘Community’ in 2010.
  • She appeared in the ‘Visit California’ promotional in 2011 and recorded a remix of her original song ‘I’m Still Hot’.
  • She lent her voice to a ‘Mickey Mouse’ character in 2013 and made a guest appearance in ‘Soul Man’ in 2014. She was host of ‘Betty White’s Off their Rockers’ from 2012 to 2014.
Awards & Achievements
  • She was awarded the Regional (LA) Emmy award (1952) as an outstanding female personality.
  • She received Emmy Awards (1975, 1976, 1983, 1986, 1996 and 2010) as an outstanding supporting actress.
  • She was the recipient of American Comedy Awards in 1987, 1990 and 2000 as the funniest female performer in a TV series.
  • She received the ‘Viewers For Quality Television Award’ in 1987 and 1988 as the best actress in a comedy series.
Personal Life & Legacy
  • She has been married thrice. In 1945, she married Dick Barker, a U.S. armed forces pilot but the marriage was short-lived. Thereafter, she married Lane Allen, a Hollywood agent but this marriage too ended in divorce in 1949.
  • In 1963, she got married to TV host and personality Allen Ludden and the two remained together till his death in 1981.
Recommended Lists:

Recommended Lists:


1. Advise & Consent (1962)

  (Thriller, Drama)

2. Time to Kill (1945)

  (War, Short)

3. The Proposal (2009)

  (Comedy, Romance, Drama)

4. You Again (2010)

  (Romance, Family, Comedy)

5. The Story of Us (1999)

  (Comedy, Romance, Drama)

6. Hard Rain (1998)

  (Drama, Action, Thriller, Crime)

7. Lake Placid (1999)

  (Horror, Action, Comedy)

8. Bringing Down the House (2003)



Primetime Emmy Awards
2010 Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series Saturday Night Live (1975)
1996 Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series The John Larroquette Show (1993)
1986 Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series The Golden Girls (1985)
1976 Outstanding Continuing Performance by a Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series Mary Tyler Moore (1970)
1975 Outstanding Continuing Performance by a Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series Mary Tyler Moore (1970)
Grammy Awards
2012 Best Spoken Word Album Winner
People's Choice Awards
2015 Favorite TV Icon Winner

See the events in life of Betty White in Chronological Order

Pictures of Betty White

How To Cite

Article Title
- Betty White Biography
- Editors,
Last Updated
- July 24, 2017

People Also Viewed

Allen Ludden
Ariana Grande
Lacey Chabert

Kim Kardashian
Sally Field