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Rosie O'Donnell has taken her popularity and put it to good use. As a tireless crusader for children, she established the Rosie's For All Kids Foundation in 1997. Since its inception, the foundation has raised more than $60 million and awarded more than $27 million in grants to over 1,400 child-related non-profit organizations to benefit low-income families across the country. In 2005, Ms. O'Donnell established a fund to provide $3 million to children and families displaced by Katrina, which among other projects built the first-ever childcare facility in a FEMA housing site, at Renaissance Village in Louisiana. In 2003, Ms. O'Donnell established Rosie's Broadway Kids, a program that provides free in-school, after-school and summer instruction in musical theater to the public school children of New York. In February 2009, Rosie's Broadway Kids opened the door to its new home, Maravel Arts Center, a performing arts school in the heart of New York City's theater district.
For six years, Rosie O'Donnell was America's best friend for an hour each day as host and executive producer of the critically acclaimed and Emmy Award-winning nationally syndicated talk/variety series "The Rosie O'Donnell Show." In May 2002, she decided to leave her successful show to spend time with her family.
In her first season on the air at "The Rosie O'Donnell Show," she won the Daytime Emmy Award for Outstanding Talk Show Host. She continued her success for five consecutive seasons by winning Daytime Emmys for both Outstanding Talk Show Host and Outstanding Talk Show. She also won a Primetime Emmy for "The 52nd Annual Tony Awards." She has graced the cover of Newsweek magazine (dubbed the "Queen of Nice"), and was cited as one of Time magazine's 25 Most Influential People in America (1997). She was also named one of Ladies Home Journal's Fascinating Women of the Year (1996), one of Barbara Walter's 10 Most Fascinating People of 1996, and Entertainment Weekly named her 1996's Entertainer of the Year. Ms. O'Donnell was last seen on daytime television as moderator on the 10th season of ABC's "The View."
Emmy award-winning talk show host Rosie O'Donnell grew up Irish Catholic on Long Island, the middle child of five. Life changed forever when her mother died of cancer when Rosie was 10. It was a sorrowful and life-defining event. Now that she's a mom, Rosie wants to find out more about the history of her mother's family, and learn more about them as fully fleshed individuals.