|First welfare mother to serve in Congress|
Inspiring life changes From welfare to Congress
First welfare mother to serve in Congress-The following celebrities have all transformed their lives in dramatic ways, some rising from poverty to stardom, others overcoming life challenges to achieve success. See if you can guess the identity of these stars.
The transformation: When her marriage ended, this California mother of three was forced to go on welfare to cover her mortgage and to pay for child care, which allowed her to keep working. She later used that experience to win election to the U.S. House of Representatives, where she has served her constituents for 20 years.
Lynn Woolsey will not seek re-election in 2012
Lynn Woolsey, D-Calif., will not run for reelection next year, the ten-term congresswoman announced from her Petaluma home on Monday.
In prepared remarks, Woolsey looked back at her nearly two decades in the House, touting particularly her opposition to the war in Iraq as well as her work on local environmental issues.
"We haven't won every battle over the years, but we have fought valiantly -- always holding fast to our principles, never compromising our values. As much as we've accomplished, of course there are mountains we haven't climbed, challenges still to be met," said Woolsey. "But I will turn 75 years old just before the next Election Day, and after two decades of service to this district, it will be time for me to move on. And so, with enormous gratitude but not an ounce of regret, I am announcing that I will not run for re-election in 2012. I will retire at the end of my current term."
The liberal Democrat had been eyeing retirement for some time, even confirming the rumors herself earlier this year and setting a self-imposed June deadline to make a decision.
Woolsey becomes the second incumbent to announce their retirement - although hers was less of a shock than Rep. Dan Boren's, D-Okla., surprise announcement earlier this month. Twelve current representatives are seeking higher office in 2012.
The veteran lawmaker's openness about her potential exit allowed several Democratic candidates to already begin lining up and raising money for the expected open seat. Assemblyman Jared Huffman and political activist Norman Solomon have formed campaign committees, and each have already raised over $100,000. Assemblyman Mike Thompson, state Sen. Noreen Evansand Marin County Supervisor Susan Adams could be other possible Democratic contenders. Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom, D-Calif., has also stoked speculation he could be pondering a run as well, especially after he moved to Marin County a few weeks ago.
But Woolsey doesn't appear likely to endorse in the race for her successor, noting in her speech that, "I leave it to you, the people of the Sixth District, to decide who should take up the mantle and continue this important work."
In a statement, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., called Woolsey "an eloquent advocate for our troops and for bringing them home safely from war. And she has used her voice to speak for those with no voice - at home and around the world."
Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee Chairman Steve Israel, D-N.Y., said in a statement that Woolsey was "a champion for hardworking Americans and for helping lead the fight to ensure fair wages, protect worker's rights to organize, and end workplace discrimination," but added that the seat is "a strong Democratic district and both President Obama and Senator Kerry carried this district by significant margins."
While the district is likely to stay a safe Democratic seat, its boundaries will change dramatically in redistricting. Under the first proposed map from the independent California Citizens Redistricting Commission., the revised district cuts out most of Sonoma County and instead extends up to the Oregon border.
In a statement after the maps were released earlier this month, Woolsey blasted the new district, saying it violated its aim of creating compact districts.
"What could be more distant than the expanse from the foot of the Golden Gate Bridge to the Oregon border? It's a 375-mile trip. You could barely make the drive in a single day," said Woolsey.
Unlikely singing sensation, The transformation: At 48, this plain and unremarkable woman from Scotland became an international singing sensation after she appeared on the television program, “Britain’s Got Talent.” Though she placed second in the televised competition, the audience loved her. Her debut album was the most pre-ordered album of all time.
Susan Boyle I Dreamed A Dream musical opens March 23, Susan Boyle will make a guest appearance on the Newcastle Theatre Royal stage in the new musical that charts her extraordinary story.
Starring Elaine C Smith, best known as Mary Doll in BBC TV's Rab C Nesbitt, the musical follows Susan Boyle's meteoric rise from humble beginnings to global icon and features signature songs from her multi-platinum selling albums.
The production opens its tour at the Newcastle Theatre Royal on Friday 23 March and plays until Saturday 31 March 2012.
Susan said “I am thrilled to be a part of the musical about my life story and very much looking forward to stepping on stage and performing with the cast. It is an honest portrayal of my life and has been a cathartic process to be involved in.”
Although the Producers of I Dreamed A Dream © can not guarantee the appearance of any artiste, Susan Boyle is expected to appear at all performances subject to unforeseen circumstances.
Mark Wahlberg's family
Boston bad boy
The transformation: The youngest of nine siblings from Boston’s rough-and-tumble Dorchester neighborhood, this now-famous film star was a drug addict at 13, charged with attempted murder at 16 and sent to prison for assault. After he was released, the high school dropout turned his life around to become a successful rapper/musician with the help of his older brother.
Tech executive to washington state senator
The transformation: Elected to Congress in 1992, this former state legislator lost her first re-election bid in 1994 and took a job at Seattle-based RealNetworks, where she earned millions in stock options. Staging a political comeback in 2000, she won a narrow victory for a U.S. Senate seat in a recount, but the dot-com bust wiped out much of her fortune.
What is his company: Amazon.com
Jeff Bezos net worth + 19.1 billion
American businessman, founder, president, CEO, and chairman of Amazon.com, Jeffrey Preston “Jeff” Bezos, has a net worth of $19.1 billion as of September 2011, according to Forbes’ list of billionaires making him 13th-richest-person in United States. A Tau Beta Pi graduate of Princeton University, worked as a financial analyst for D. E. Shaw & Co. before founding Amazon in 1994. As a toddler in Albuquerque, New Mexico, Bezos tried to dismantle his crib with a screwdriver. His mechanical aptitude continued and he converted his parents’ garage into a lab for science projects. Bright enough to enter Princeton, Bezos switched from physics to a BSc degree in electrical engineering and computer science, which he earned with distinction.
He went to work on Wall Street in 1986 and might have made a fortune there but for his decision in 1994 to set up an online bookseller. Bezos wrote the business plan while he and his wife, Mackenzie, drove from Texas to Seattle and they set up the company in their garage. The name they chose was Amazon.com – partly after the river, with its countless branches, and partly because it would show up quickly on lists ordered alphabetically. It floated on the stock market in 1997 and showed its first modest profit in 2001. Today Amazon.com has been transformed into a multinational e-commerce company selling books, DVDs, CDs, MP3 downloads, computer software, video games, electronics, clothes, furniture, food and toys. His past share sales and other assets, such as the Blue Origin aerospace company, take the 47-year-old to $18.1 billion. Bezos was born Jeffrey Preston Jorgensen in Albuquerque, NM on January 12, 1964.
Online entrepreneur + 1999 TIME person of the year
The transformation: This entrepreneur decided to strike out on his own in 1994. He drove from New York to Seattle, wrote the business plan for a new kind of Internet venture and founded a now hugely successful online company in his garage. His business made him a multi-billionaire and landed him on the cover of Time magazine as person of the year in 1999.
Dark Towers movie
Stephen King + published 49 novels
Born in September 1947, Stephen King has of 2011, written and published 49 novels, five non fiction books and nine collections of short stories.
Prolific Maine novelist
The transformation: Unable to find work as a teacher after college , this author started his professional writing career while working in an industrial laundry and supplementing his income with occasional short-story sales to magazines. He became one of the most successful novelists in U.S. history but was nearly killed when he was struck by a car while walking along a road near his home in Maine.
Billionaire female media mogul
The transformation: Born into poverty and sexually molested as a young girl, this media icon was an unwed mother at 14 (her son was born premature and died in infancy). Determined to rise above her circumstances, she became a broadcast journalist and went on to become an entertainment phenomenon, multi-billionaire and world-class philanthropist whose face and name are known worldwide.
Canadian stand-up to ace hollywood actor
The transformation: When he was in high school, this actor and comedian lived with his family in a VW camper van and worked as a janitor at a nearby tire factory to help his parents make ends meet. He dropped out of school to pursue his passion for comedy and, soon after, moved to Los Angeles, eventually becoming one of the highest-paid actors in Hollywood.
Los Angeles Riderettes + Lady Arena Football League
L.A. rapper Snoop Dogg may be best known for his tunes — he performed Thursday night at the Doritos Jacked six-story vending machine stage at SXSW — but the guy sure likes his sports. A few years ago, he started the Snoop Youth Football League to help get underprivileged kids playing the game.
That little venture got him some good publicity when it launched but then caught him the other way back in November when the Pilson jets in Chicago had its players “banned from taking part in a playoff game,” allegedly because of a “$22,000 bill for the team's equipment (that) had been left unpaid.”
It may be a Dogg eat Dogg world, but he's not giving up on sports team ownership — Fuse TV reports that he's becoming a part owner of the Los Angeles Riderettes of the brand new Lady Arena Football League.
ThisBeatGoes.com hears that the Riderettes (not to be confused with the Raiderettes) will play their first game on May 19th against the New Orleans Lady Dollz. Other cities where you can check out Lady Arena League teams include Baton Rouge, Kansas City, Houston, and St. Louis, though the site notes that the league “plans to unveil additional competitors in Las Vegas, Oakland and Atlanta.”
In a sports world that is already stuffed with teams and events, the LAFL will also have its hands full competing against a women’s football league that’s been around for a few years already: the Lingerie Football League. Perhaps there is a merger ahead, like when the AFL and NFL came together in 1970. Only time will tell.
Chronic gangsta rapper
The transformation: This influential rapper started out as a poor kid in a rough neighborhood. Arrested several times for drug possession after high school, he did time in prison before getting involved in music and turning his life around. His first album hit No. 1 on Billboard’s hip-hop and Top 200 charts, and he continued to score with each new release.
Who is her husband : ty murray
Alaska wild child turned hit singer
The transformation: This genre-bending singer-songwriter grew up in a wilderness home without indoor plumbing. Determined to earn her living only with her music, she lived in her van and performed at taverns and street fairs, and was discovered in a San Diego coffee shop. She signed a contract with Atlantic Records and released her multi-platinum debut album when she was 21.
His girlfriend name is Selena Gomez
Canadian teen pop sensation
The transformation: This Canadian pop star, the son of a young single mother, grew up in a rodent-infested home with a near-empty fridge. At age 12, he placed second in a local talent contest, and his mother posted a video of the event on YouTube, causing a sensation. Signed to a record deal when he was 13, the young artist was soon releasing one chart-topping hit after another.
Mariah Carey with nick cannon and twins
Romper Room dropout turned actor
The transformation: This actor grew up poor in a rough section of Tinseltown. After a rocky start in show business—he was kicked off the set of “Romper Room” at age 5 for disruptive behavior—he started doing commercials and landed a role on a popular TV sitcom before breaking into movies. He is considered one of the best actors of his generation.
Locust Ridge music superstar
The transformation: One of 12 children, she grew up “dirt poor” in a one-room cabin on a run-down tobacco farm in Locust Ridge, Tenn. She moved to this country music mecca and made a name for herself as a songwriter. Today, she has several Grammy Awards, a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, a place in the Country Music Hall of Fame and a National Medal of Arts
Best-selling female country music artist
The transformation: This Canadian-born country music star started performing at age 8, singing for tips in bars, and then toured with a couple of bands before moving to Nashville. Her fledgling music career was interrupted when her parents were killed in an auto accident, and she returned to Canada to care for her younger siblings. She came back to record the best-selling country music album of all time.
Mary j. blige
Bronx pop, r b, hip hop and gospel grammy award winner
The transformation: This singer, songwriter and record producer was born in a government housing project and dropped out of high school during her junior year. She struggled for years to break free of drugs, alcohol and abusive relationships. Today, she is a best-selling recording artist, nine-time Grammy Award winner and the only person ever to receive Grammys in the Pop, Rap, Gospel and R&B categories.
Actress born in prison
The transformation: This actress and singer was born in a federal prison while her mother was serving a 10-year stretch for her part in an international drug ring that smuggled tons of marijuana into the United States. Her guest appearance in a “Law & Order” episode when she was 13 led to larger parts and, eventually, a starring role in a popular TV series.
Grocery stock boy to gridiron champ
The transformation: This gridiron superstar was passed over during the NFL draft and ended up stocking shelves at a Hy-Vee grocery store in Cedar Falls, Iowa, for $5.50 an hour. He played Arena Football for three years and finally got a contract with the St. Louis Rams. During his 12 years as an NFL quarterback, he won multiple MVP honors, set numerous passing records and became a Super Bowl champion.