Betty Marion White Ludden (January 17, 1922 – December 31, 2021) was an American actress and comedian. An early television pioneer with a career spanning seven decades, White was noted for her tremendous work in the entertainment industry. She was one of the first women to exert control both in front of and behind the camera, and the first woman to produce a sitcom (Life with Elizabeth ), which contributed to her being named an honorary mayor of Hollywood in 1955. White is often referred to as the “First Lady of Television,” a title used for a 2018 documentary detailing her life and career.
After making the transition from radio to television, White became famous on American game shows, including Password, Match Game, Tattletales, To Tell the Truth, The Hollywood Squares, and The $25,000 Pyramid. Dubbed “the first lady of game shows”, White became the first woman to receive the Daytime Emmy Award for Outstanding Game Show Show for Just Men! in 1983. She was also known for her appearances on Daring and Charming, Boston Legal and The Carol Burnett Show. Her biggest roles include Sue Ann Nivens on the CBS sitcom The Mary Tyler Moore Show (1973-1977), Rose Nilde on the NBC sitcom The Golden Girls (1985-1992) and Elka Ostrovsky on the TV Land sitcom Hot in Cleveland (2010-2015). She gained renewed popularity after appearing in the 2009 romantic comedy The Proposal (2009) and then was the subject of a successful Facebook campaign to host Saturday Night Live in 2010, earning her a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series.
White has worked longer on television than anyone else in the medium, winning the Guinness World Record in 2018. White received eight Emmy Awards in various categories, three American Comedy Awards, three Actors Guild Awards and a Grammy Award. She has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and was inducted into the Television Hall of Fame in 1995.
Betty Marion White was born in Oak Park, Illinois, on January 17, 1922. She stated that Betty was her legal name and not a shortened version of Elizabeth. She was the only child of Christine Tess, a homemaker, and Horace Lowgan White (1899-1963), Her paternal grandfather was Danish and her maternal grandfather was Greek, with her other roots being English and Welsh (both of her grandmothers were Canadian).
White”s family moved to Alhambra, California in 1923 when she was just over a year old and later to Los Angeles during the Great Depression. To make extra money, her father made crystal radios and sold them wherever he could. Since it was the height of the Depression, and almost no one had a large enough income, he traded the radios in exchange for other goods, including dogs in some cases.
White attended the Beverly Hills Unified School District in Beverly Hills and Beverly Hills High School, graduating in 1939. Her interest in wildlife was sparked by a family vacation to the Sierra Nevada. She originally aspired to a career as a park ranger, but was unable to do so because women were not allowed to serve as rangers at the time. Instead, White pursued his interest in writing. She wrote and starred in a graduation play at Horace Mann School and discovered her interest in performing. Inspired by her idols Zanek McDonald and Nelson Eddy, she decided to pursue a career as an actress.
Three months after graduating from high school, she and a classmate sang songs from The Merry Widow in an experimental television show while the medium of television itself was still in development. White found work in modeling and her first professional job as an actress was at the Bliss Hayden Little Theatre. When World War II broke out, she put her career on hold and volunteered with the American Women”s Voluntary Services. Her assignment included driving a PX truck with military supplies in the Hollywood Hills. She also participated in events for troops before they were deployed overseas. Commenting on her time in the service, White said: “It was a strange time and out of balance with everything.”
1949-1953: Radio work and Bandy Productions
After the war, White made the rounds of film studios looking for work, but she was always turned down because she was “not photogenic.” Then she started looking for radio jobs where being photogenic didn”t matter. Her first radio jobs included reading commercials and playing songs, and sometimes even making crowd noises. She made about five dollars a show. He would do almost anything, like singing on a show for no pay or appearing on the local game show. She appeared on shows like Blondie, The Great Gildersleeve and This Is Your FBI . Then she was offered her own radio show, called The Betty White Show. In 1949, she began appearing as a co-host with Al Jarvis on the daily live television show Hollywood on Television, originally called Make Believe Ballroom, on KFWB and KCOP-TV in Los Angeles.
White began hosting the show on her own in 1952 after Jarvis” retirement, running five and a half hours of live ad lib television six days a week for four consecutive years. In all of the various variety shows over the years, White sang at least a few songs during each broadcast. In 1951, she was nominated for her first Emmy Award for “Best Female Performance” on television, competing against Judith Anderson, Helen Hayes and Imogen Coca. The award went to Gerrude Berg. At this point, the award was for overall work, with no appearances named in nominations.
In 1952, the same year that she began hosting Hollywood on Television, White founded Bandy Productions with writer George Tibbels and Don Federson, a producer. The trio worked to create new shows using existing characters from sketches that aired on Hollywood on Television. White, Federson and Tibbels created the television comedy Life with Elizabeth, with White playing the title character. The show was originally a live production on KCOP-TV in 1951, and earned White an Emmy Award in Los Angeles in 1952.
Life with Elizabeth ran nationally from 1952 to 1955, allowing White to become one of the few women on television with full creative control in front of and behind the camera. The show was unusual for a sitcom in the 1950s because it was co-produced and owned by a 28-year-old woman still living with her parents. White said they didn”t worry about relevance in those days and that usually the incidents were based on real-life situations that happened to her, the actor who played Alvin and the writer.
White also appeared in television commercials that aired on live television in Los Angeles, including a performance of the “Dr. Ross Dog Food” ad on KTLA during the 1950s. He starred as a guest on The Millionaire in the episode “The Virginia Lennart Story” as a small-town diner owner who received an anonymous $1,000,000 gift in 1956.
1952-1959: Betty White Show και Date with the Angels
From 1952 to 1954, White hosted and produced her own daily talk show
After Life with Elizabeth ended, she appeared as Vicki Angel in the ABC sitcom Date with the Angels from 1957 to 1958. As originally predicted, the show, loosely based on Elmer Rice”s play Dream Girl, would focus on Vicki”s absent-minded tendencies. However, the sponsor was not happy with the fantasy elements and pushed to eliminate them. “I can honestly say that was the only time I ever wanted to get out of a show,” White later said. The sitcom was a critical disaster and the ratings were a disaster, but ABC would not allow White to get out of her contractual agreement and asked her to fill the remaining thirteen weeks in their deal. Instead of a revamped version of the sitcom, White went back to her old talk
The sitcom gave White some positive experiences: she met Lucille Ball for the first time while working on it, and Date With the Angels and I Love Lucy were both filmed in the same Culver Studios space. The two quickly struck up a friendship because of their accomplishments in taking over the male-dominated television business in the 1950s. They relied on each other through divorce, illness, personal loss and even competed against each other on various game shows.
In July 1959, White made her professional stage debut in a week-long production of the play, Third Best Sport, at the Ephrata Legion Star Playhouse in Ephrata, Pennsylvania.
1960s: first lady of Gameshows, Password and Advise & Consent
By the 1960s, White was a staple of network game and talk shows: including Jack Purr and later the Johnny Carson era of The Tonight Show. She made several appearances on the hit show Password as a guest from 1961 to 1975. She married the show”s host, Allen Louden, in 1963. She then appeared on the three updated versions of the show, Password Plus, and Million Dollar Password . White appeared frequently on game shows on What”s My Line? (beginning in 1955), To Tell the Truth (in 1961, 1990, and 2015), I”ve Got a Secret (in 1972-73), Match Game (1973-1982), and Pyramid (beginning in 1982 ). She made her feature film debut as the fictional Kansas Senator Elizabeth Ames Adams in the 1962 drama Advise & Consent; in 2004, on the talk show Q&A, host Brian Lamb remarked on White”s longevity as an actress in addition to the fact that she played a powerful senator in 1962. He and Donald A. Ritchie noted that viewers would have seen the character of Senator Adams mirroring Margaret Chase Smith.
NBC offered her a job on the top-rated television show Today. She turned down the offer because she didn”t want to move permanently to New York (where Today is produced). The job eventually went to Barbara Walters. During the 1950s and 1960s, White began a nineteen-year run as host and commentator on the annual Rose Parade broadcast on NBC (co-hosted with Roy Neal and later Lorne Green) and appeared on a number of midnight shows; including Jack Poore”s The Tonight Show and various other daytime games.
1970s: The Mary Tyler Moore Show and The Betty White Show
In 1973, White made several appearances on the fourth season of The Mary Tyler Moore Show as Sue Ann Nivens. The role won White her second and third Emmy Awards. Although she considered the role a highlight of her career, she described the character as “sweet”, feeling that it was the very definition of female passivity due to the fact that she always satirized her own personality on screen in such a way.
White won two back-to-back Emmy Awards for her role in the hugely popular series.
Mary Tyler Moore and her husband Grant Tinker were close friends with White and her husband Allen Lunden. When Valerie Harper left The Mary Tyler Moore Show, the producers felt the show needed another female character, so they created Sue Ann Nivens. In a 2010 interview for The Interviews: An Oral History of Television, Moore explained that the producers, aware of Moore and White”s friendship, were initially hesitant to audition White for the role, fearing that if she was wrong, it would create awkwardness between the two.
In 1975, NBC replaced her as a commentator for the Tournament of Roses Parade, feeling that she was too closely identified with the rival CBS network”s The Mary Tyler Moore Show. After The Mary Tyler Moore Show ended in 1977, White was offered her own comedy series on CBS, the fourth titled The Betty White Show (the first a quarter earlier), in which she co-starred with John Hillerman. Against Monday Night Football in its time slot, the ratings were poor and it was cancelled after one season.
White appeared many times on The Carol Burnett Show appearing in several sketches and began guest-starring in a number of television movies and television mini-series, including With This Ring, The Best Place to Be, Before and After and The Gossip Columnist.
1980s: Mama”s Family and The Golden Girls
In 1983, White became the first woman to win a Daytime Emmy Award, for her entry in NBC”s Just Men! Because of the volume of work she did on them, she was considered the “First Lady of Game Shows.”
From 1983 to 1984, White had a recurring role playing Helen Harper Jackson in Mama”s Family, along with future Golden Girls co-star Rue MacLennahan. White had created this character in a series of sketches on The Carol Burnett Show in the 1970s.
In 1985, White scored her second signature role and the biggest hit of her career as Rose Nyland, a native of St. Olaf, Minnesota, in The Golden Girls. The series chronicled the lives of four widowed or divorced women in their “golden years” who shared a house in Miami. The Golden Girls, which also starred Bea Arthur, Estelle Getty and Rue MacLennahan, was hugely successful and aired from 1985 to 1992. White won an Emmy Award, for Outstanding Actress in a Comedy Series, for the first season of The Golden Girls and was nominated in that category every year of the series (Getty was also nominated every year, but in the Supporting Actress category).
White had a strained relationship with her The Golden Girls co-star Bea Arthur on and off the set of their TV show, commenting that Arthur “didn”t love her that much” and that she “sometimes got a sore throat. It was her positive attitude – and it made Bea angry sometimes. Sometimes, if she was happy, she”d be furious.” After Arthur”s death in 2009, White said: “I knew it would hurt, I just didn”t know it would hurt that much.” Despite their differences, Golden Girls was a positive experience for both actresses and they had great mutual respect for the show, their roles and their accomplishments as a cast ensemble. Arthur often insisted that she wait to leave for lunch until all four (she and White, Rue McClanahan and Estelle Jetty) had finished their work and could leave together.
White was originally offered the role of Blanche in The Golden Girls and Rue McClanahan was offered the role of Rose.The two characters were similar to the roles they had played in Mary Tyler Moore and Maude, respectively. Jay Sandrich, the director of the pilot, suggested that because they had played similar roles in the past, they should switch roles, Rue McClanahan later said in a documentary about the series. White initially had doubts about her ability to play Rose, until Sandrich explained that Rose was “ultimately naive”. White says “if you told Rose you were so hungry you could eat a horse, she”d call the ASPCA.”
1990-2009: guest roles and return to the big screen in The Proposal
The Golden Girls ended in 1992 after Arthur announced her decision to leave the series. White, McClanahan and Jetty reprised their roles as Rose (Rose), Blanche (Blanche) and Sophia (Sophia) in the spin-off The Golden Palace. The series was short-lived, lasting only one season. In addition, White reprised the character of Rose Nilewood in guest appearances on NBC”s Empty Nest and Nurses, both set in Miami.
After The Golden Palace ended, White performed as a guest on a number of television programs, including Suddenly Susan, The Practice and Yes, Dear where she received Emmy nominations for her individual performances. She won an Emmy in 1996 for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series, appearing as herself in an episode of The John Larroquette Show. In that episode, titled “Here We Go Again”, a parody on Avenue of the West, a diva like White convinces Larroquette to help write her memoir. At one point, Golden Girls co-stars McClanahan (McClanahan) and Jetty (Getty) appear as himself. Laroquette is forced to dress in drag as Bee Arthur when all four appear in public as the “original” cast members.
In December 2006, White joined the soap opera Daring and Charming in the role of Ann Douglas, where she would make 22 appearances as the show”s long-lost matriarch mother Stephanie Forrester, played by Susan Flannery . She also began a recurring role on ABC”s Boston Legal from 2005 to 2008 as the calculating, blackmailing gossip columnist Catherine Piper, a role she originally played as a guest star on The Practice in 2004.
White appeared several times on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno and The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson to appear in several sketches and returned to Password in its latest incarnation, Million Dollar Password, on June 12, 2008, (episode
In 2009, White starred in the romantic comedy The Proposal alongside Sandra Bullock and Ryan Reynolds. Also in 2009, the candy company Mars, Incorporated launched a global campaign for its Snickers bar. The campaign slogan was: “It”s not you when you”re hungry.” White appeared, along with Abe Vigoda, in the company”s ad for the candy during Super Bowl XLIV in 2010. The ad became very popular and earned the top spot on the Super Bowl Ad Meter.
2010-2021: Career revival, Saturday Night Live and Hot in Cleveland
Following the success of the Snickers ad, a grassroots Facebook campaign titled “Betty White to Host SNL (Please)” was launched in January 2010. The group was approaching 500,000 members when NBC confirmed on March 11, 2010 that White would in fact host Saturday Night Live on May 8. Her appearance made her, at age 88, the oldest person to host the show. In her opening monologue, White thanked Facebook and joked that “I didn”t know what Facebook was and now that I know what it is, I have to say, it sounds like a huge waste of time.” The performance earned her a Primetime Emmy Award in 2010 for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series.
In June 2010, White was cast as Elka Ostrowski the janitor in TV Land”s original comedy series Hot in Cleveland alongside Valerie Bertinelli, Jane Leaves and Wendy Malick . Hot in Cleveland was TV Land”s first attempt at a first-run scripted comedy (the network has reprised other comedies since its debut). White was only supposed to appear in the pilot, but was asked to stay on for the entire series. In 2011, she was nominated for a Primetime Emmy Award for Best Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series for her role as Elka, but lost to Julie Bowen for Modern Family . The series aired for six seasons, a total of 128 episodes, with the hour-long final episode airing on June 3, 2015
White also starred in the Hallmark Hall of Fame presentation of The Lost Valentine on January 30, 2011 (this presentation earned the highest rating for a Hallmark Hall of Fame presentation in the previous four years and according to television ratings service Nielsen Media Research earned the top spot in the prime time slot for that date), and from 2012 to 2014, White hosted and executive produced Betty White”s Offir Rockers, in which seniors play practical jokes on the younger generation. For this show, he received three Emmy nominations.
A Betty White calendar for 2011 was published in late 2010. The calendar includes photos from White”s career and various animals. She also launched her own clothing line on July 22, 2010, which includes shirts with her face on them. All proceeds go to various animal charities she supported.
White”s success continued in 2012 with her first Grammy Award for Best Recording of a Spoken Word for her best-selling If You Ask Me . She also won the UCLA Jack Benny Award for Comedy, recognizing her significant contribution to comedy on television. A television special, Betty White”s 90th birthday party, aired on NBC the day before her birthday on January 16, 2012. The show featured appearances by many of the stars White has worked with over the years, as well as a message from then-President Barack Obama. In January 2013, NBC once again celebrated White”s birthday with a televised special featuring celebrity friends, including former President Bill Clinton; the special aired on February 5.
On February 15, 2015, White made her final appearance on Saturday Night Live when she attended the 40th Anniversary Special. She participated in the sketch “The Californians” alongside members of the current SNL cast members as well as Bill Haider, Taylor Swift and Kerry Washington. In the memorable sketch, White ends up kissing Bradley Cooper.
On August 18, 2018, White”s career was celebrated in a PBS documentary titled Betty White: First Lady of Television. The documentary was filmed over a ten-year period and featured archived footage and interviews with colleagues and friends. In 2019, White appeared in Pixar”s Toy Story 4, providing the voice of Betty White, a tiger named after her. The other toys she shared a scene with were named and played by Carol Burnett, Carl Rainer and Mel Brooks. White commented that “It was wonderful the way they incorporated our names into the characters. . . and I”m a sucker for animals, so the tiger was perfect!”
In December 2021, before White”s death, it was announced that a new documentary film about her, Betty White: A Celebration, would be released in US theatres on her 100th birthday, January 17, 2022. It will feature a cast of friends including Ryan Reynolds, Tina Fey, Robert Redford, Lyn-Manuel Miranda, Clint Eastwood, Morgan Freeman, Jay Leno, Carol Burnett, Craig Ferguson, Jimmy Kimmel, Valerie Bertinelli, James Corden, Wendy Malick and Jennifer Love Hewitt. In addition to the planned documentary, People magazine will feature her as the cover of its January 10, 2022 edition of the pavilion and a special commemorative edition to celebrate the anticipated milestone, released days before her death.
Following White”s death, producers Steve Betcher and Mike Trinklin of event distributors Fathom Events announced in a Facebook post that the pre-taped production would go on as planned.
White won five Emmy Zone High Rating Emmy Awards, two Daytime Emmy Awards (including the 2015 Daytime Emmy for Lifetime Achievement) and received a Los Angeles Emmy Award in 1952. White was the only woman to receive an Emmy in all comedy performance categories and also holds the record for the longest interval between Emmy nominations for performances – her first was in 1951 and her last was in 2014, a period of more than 60 years. In 2015, she received the Lifetime Achievement Daytime Emmy. She also won three American Comedy Awards (including a Lifetime Achievement Award in 1990) and two Viewers Choice Awards for Television Quality Awards. She was inducted into the Television Hall of Fame in 1995 and has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame on Hollywood Boulevard along with her late husband Allen Louden”s star. In 2009, White received the TCA Career Achievement Award from the Television Critics Association .
White was the recipient of The Pacific Pioneer Broadcasters Golden Ike Award and the Genii Award from the Alliance for Women in Media in 1976. The American Comedy Awards presented her with the award for Funniest Woman in 1987 and the Lifetime Achievement Award in 1990.
The American Veterinary Medical Association presented White with the Humane Award in 1987 for her charitable work with animals. The City of Los Angeles further honored her for her philanthropic work with animals in 2006 with a bronze plaque near the Gorilla exhibit at the Los Angeles Zoo. The City of Los Angeles named her “Ambassador to Animals” at the dedication ceremony.
In September 2009, the Screen Actors Guild (SAG) announced plans to honor White with the Screen Actors Guild Life Achievement Award at the 16th Screen Actors Guild of America Awards. Actress Sandra Bullock presented White with the award on January 23, 2010, at a ceremony held at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles. In 2009, White and her Golden Girls co-stars Bea Arthur, Rue McClanahan and Estelle Getty were honored with Disney Legends Awards. White was inducted into the California Hall of Fame in December 2010. In 2010, she was selected as the Associated Press” Best Female Entertainer.
On November 9, 2010, the USDA Forest Service, along with Smokey Bear, made White an honorary ranger, fulfilling her lifelong dream. White said in previous interviews that she wanted to be a ranger as a little girl, but that at the time women were not allowed to do so. When White received the honor, more than a third of Forest Service employees were women.
In January 2011, White received a SAG Award for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Comedy Series for her role as Elka Ostrowski in Hot in Cleveland. The show itself was also nominated for an award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy Series, but lost to the cast of Modern Family. She won the same award again in 2012 and later received a third nomination.
In October 2011, White was awarded an honorary degree and a white coat from Washington State University.
A 2011 poll conducted by Reuters and Ipsos revealed that White was considered the most popular and most trusted celebrity among Americans, surpassing Denzel Washington, Sandra Bullock and Tom Hanks.
In 2017, after 70 years in the industry, White was invited to become a member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. At 95 years old, this made her the oldest new member at the time.
While volunteering with the American Women”s Voluntary Services, White met her first husband Dick Barker, a P-38 pilot in the United States Air Force. After the war, the couple married and moved to Bel Center, Ohio. They returned to Los Angeles and divorced within a year.
In 1947 she married Lane Allen. They divorced in 1949 because he wanted a family, but she wanted a career rather than children.
On June 14, 1963, White married television host and personality Allen Landen, whom she had met on his show Password as a celebrity guest in 1961, and her legal name was changed to Betty White Landen. He proposed to White at least twice before she accepted. The couple appeared together in an episode of The Odd Couple with Felix and Oscar”s appearance in Password .
Among the couple”s high friends was the writer John Steinbeck. In 2011, White wrote about her friendship with the author. Laden had attended the same school as Steinbeck”s wife, Elaine Anderson Steinbeck. Steinbeck gave an early draft of the Nobel Prize for Literature acceptance speech to Landen on his birthday.
Allen Loaten died of stomach cancer on June 9, 1981 in Los Angeles. While they had no children together, she was a stepmother to three of his children from his first marriage to Margaret McGloin Landen, who died of cancer in 1961. White decided not to remarry after Landen”s death. In an interview with Larry King, when asked if she would remarry, she responded by saying “Once you have the best, who needs the rest?”
White attended the Unity Church.
White was a pet lover and animal welfare advocate who worked with organizations such as the Los Angeles Zoo Commission, the Morris Animal Foundation, the African Wildlife Foundation, and Actors and Others for Animals. Her interest in animal welfare began in the early 1970s while producing and presenting the syndicated series The Pet Set, which featured celebrities and their pets. Since 2009, White has been the president emeritus of the Morris Animal Foundation, where she has served as a trustee of the organization since 1971. She has been a board member of the Greater Los Angeles Zoo Association since 1974. In addition, White served the association as a zoo commissioner for eight years.
According to the Los Angeles Zoo and Botanical Garden”s ZooScape membership newsletter, White hosted “History on Film” from 2000 to 2002. White donated nearly $100,000 to the Zoo in April 2008 alone. White served as a judge at the 2011 American Humane Hero Dog Awards ceremony at The Beverly Hilton Hotel on October 1, 2011, in Los Angeles.
In September 2011, White collaborated with English singer Luciana to create a remix of her song “I”m Still Hot”. The song was released digitally on September 22 and the video premiered later on October 6. It was created for a campaign for a life settlement program, The Lifeline. White served alongside Whoopi Goldberg and Wendy Diamond for American Humane”s Hero Dog Awards on the Hallmark Channel on November 8, 2011.
In 1954, as The Betty White Show went national throughout the United States, White was criticized by many in the southern states for having Arthur Duncan, a dancer in her vaudeville act, and was asked to remove him. Her response was “I”m sorry. Live with it.” As a result of this, she gave Duncan even more airtime and her show was soon cancelled by the network.
In 2017, sixty-three years after the show”s cancellation, Duncan appeared as a surprise guest on the premiere of the reality talent series Little Big Shots: Forever Young, where he appeared and reunited with White, later thanking her again for her support.
An advocate and defender of LGBT rights, White said that “If a couple has been together all this time – and there are gay relationships that are more solid than some heterosexual ones – I think it”s OK if they want to get married. Mind your own business, take care of your own affairs and don”t worry so much about other people.” In a 2011 interview, White said she always knew her close friend Liberace was gay and that she sometimes accompanied him to premieres.
White died of natural causes at her home in the Brentwood neighborhood of Los Angeles on December 31, 2021, at the age of 99, just seventeen days before her 100th birthday and planned celebrations.
US President Joe Biden issued a statement after her death, calling her a “wonderful lady” and a “cultural icon who will be greatly missed”. Former First Lady Michelle Obama also expressed her condolences on social media, writing ” she broke barriers, defied expectations, served her country and made us all laugh. … Barack and I unite so many around the world who will miss the joy she brought to the world.” The United States Army also expressed its condolences, as White had served in the Army during World War II in the American Women”s Volunteer Services, and the Martin Luther King Jr. Center expressed their condolences and praised White for her early support of racial equality. Tributes to White followed from ESPN, NBA, WWE, The Academy, The Emmys, Disney and Forbes.
Many celebrities also paid tribute, including Ryan Reynolds, Sandra Bullock, Robert Redford, Reese Witherspoon, Viola Davis, Oprah Winfrey, Dolly Parton, Cher, Dion Warwick, Helen DeGeneres, Seth Myers, Sharon Stone, Carol Burnett, Mel Brooks, Bob Aitzer, Paul Feich, Andy Cowen, Valerie Bertinelli, Conan O”Brien, Sarah Highland, Debra Messing, Mark Raffalo, Jimmy Fallon, Kerry Washington, Henry Winkler, George Takei, Kathy Griffin, John Mayer, Joe Jonas and Pink.
On December 31, 2021, CNN interrupted regular programming to announce the breaking news of White”s death at the age of 99. On the night of her death, Andy Cowen and Anderson Cooper gave a toast in her honor on CNN”s New Year”s Eve Live. At the Decadence EDM Music Festival in Arizona, American DJ Dillon Francis paid tribute to White during New Year”s Eve by projecting images of White throughout her career while playing the theme music to The Golden Girls. Both the Chicago Bulls basketball team and the New York Islanders ice hockey teams paid a similar tribute to White at their games on January 2, 2022.
White”s star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame was flooded with flowers and tributes just hours after her death was announced.
In January 2022, TMZ reported that Vicki Skaman, mayor of White”s hometown of Oak Park, Illinois, will recognize January 17 each year as Betty White Day, and a mural is to be painted in the center of the Illinois native”s home.
White has published many books. In August 2010, she signed a deal with GP Putnam”s Sons to produce two more books, the first of which, If You Ask Me (And of Course You Won”t), was released in 2011. In February 2012, White received her first Grammy Award (“Best Spoken Word Recording”) for her book recording.