Julie Chen and her husband, Leslie Moonves, are the donors behind a naming gift to the two-story, 20,000-square-foot Julie Chen/Leslie Moonves and CBS Media Center at Wallis Annenberg Hall. Chen hosts two CBS shows, The Talk and Big Brother, and Moonves is president and CEO of CBS.
“After seeing the impressive Annenberg Hall for the first time,” says Chen, “I was inspired to support my alma mater and [energized to] make an impact on future generations of journalists and communicators.”
In addition to her work on The Talk and Big Brother, Chen has 20+ years of experience with CBS, including being an anchor for CBS Morning News, CBS This Morning and the Early Show.
Born and raised in Queens, New York, Chen pursued broadcast journalism because of the lack of diversity she saw on television while she was growing up in the 1970s. After graduating from USC, she spent four years as a producer at KABC Los Angeles before becoming a reporter for three years in Dayton, Ohio. Chen is candid about having undergone plastic surgery early in her professional life after being ill-advised that her natural eye shape made her look disinterested during interviews. Nevertheless, she believes that the majority of discrimination she has faced during her career has been sexism, not racism, and that she has seen this improve over time.