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Vanna White Biography

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vanna white

Vanna White

Courtesy CBS

Vanna White is best known for clapping and turning letters on Wheel of Fortune, adding her own charm and personality to the show. Wheel just wouldn't be the same without Vanna on board!

Quick Facts About Vanna White

  • Born: February 18th, 1957
  • Hometown: North Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
  • School: Atlanta School of Fashion Design
  • Family: Two children, Nicholas and Giovanna, from a previous marriage
  • Trademark: Wearing a different designer gown every night on Wheel of Fortune, and her mega-watt smile

Vanna's Career in Show Business

During the very early 1980s, Vanna White attended the Atlanta School of Fashion Design and became a successful model. She had hopes of becoming an actress as well. In 1980 White appeared as a contestant on The Price is Right, though she didn't win anything.

In 1982 when Susan Stafford departed Wheel, White was selected as one of three temporary co-hosts, alternating shows with Vicki McCarty and Summer Bartholomew. By the end of the year the permanent co-hosting job was offered to and accepted by Vanna, and she has been with the show ever since.

While Wheel of Fortune is her best-known gig by a long shot, Vanna White has appeared in numerous other productions for television and film. She usually plays herself, but not always. Titles that feature some of Vanna's acting work include:

  • Married with Children
  • The Super Mario Bros. Super Show
  • Captain Planet and the Planeteers
  • Venus: The Goddess of Love (made for TV movie)
  • Midnight Offerings (made for TV movie

Playing herself, the list of titles is much longer. Just a few of these include:

  • King of Queens
  • Just Shoot Me
  • The Daily Show
  • Naked Gun 33 1/3: The Final Insult
  • Full House
  • L.A. Law
  • The A Team

Vanna's Choice Yarn by Lion Brand

One of Vanna's hobbies is crocheting, and together with Lion Brand yarn she has developed a line of yarn called Vanna's Choice. A portion of sales of this yarn is donated to St. Jude's National Children's Research Hospital, and Vanna is very involved in the line itself.

Fun Facts About Vanna White

  • Vanna holds the Guiness world record for clapping. She was named the "most frequent clapper" with an average of 100,000 claps per season of Wheel of Fortune.
  • She is very active in charity work, volunteering time to charities such as Rebuilding Together, The American Heart Association, and The Susan G. Koman Foundation, as well as a number of food banks in and around Los Angeles.
  • Vanna once worked as a timekeeper for the Wrestlemania franchise, during Wrestlemania IV.
  • Her star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame is located on the south side of 7000 block, on Hollywood Blvd.

Vanna White Quotes

"Oh, they don't think I'm any different from any other mom! Wheel of Fortune has been on all their lives, so it's normal for them. They get surprised to see me on other shows though. I did an infomercial once, and it was on in the middle of the day. My daughter saw it and was like, "Mom! That's you!" But Wheel is nothing to them." -- about how her kids feel about "mom" being on television, in this exclusive interview.

"I turned letters for many years and it took a lot of time between each round to go in and manually put in letters, make sure it worked. It probably added one or two hours to our daily schedules because time is money and so they came up with a computerized version where it just lights up and I just have to touch it. The thing is, they really don't need me. They could just use the computer. I'm glad they keep me around!" -- on the switch from letters that had to be turned to a computer-generated letter board, from 1011now.com.

"I will tell you that out of the 5,000 plus gowns I’ve worn, I have not liked every one of them. But, I feel like I have to have variety. Just because I don’t love it, doesn’t mean someone else doesn’t. I try to be open-minded about that." -- commenting on the thousands of designer dresses she's worn on the show, with Portland Monthly Mag.

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