Since 2001, Kelly Ripa has co-hosted America’s highest-rated morning show, Live with…, alongside Regis Philbin, Michael Strahan and some 60 other celebrity guests. But most recent recruit Ryan Seacrest may well be the first co-host that she has made cry. And, no, Ripa wasn’t bullying the new boy. Thankfully, as you are about to discover, the tears were for an altogether more heartwarming reason.
Born in Stratford, New Jersey in 1970, Ripa initially studied psychology at Camden County College before leaving for New York to pursue an acting career. Then, in 1990, she was cast as party girl Hayley Vaughan on the television soap opera All My Children. During her 12 years on that series, Ripa also appeared in the 1994 Seinfield episode “The Stand In,” 1996’s film drama Marvin’s Room and the TV movie Someone to Love in 2001.
But Ripa’s star truly skyrocketed when she auditioned to replace Kathie Lee Gifford on America’s number one morning television show, Live with…, in 2001. And Ripa pipped the likes of Rosie O’Donnell and Whoopi Goldberg to the presenter’s post, sitting alongside long-time host Regis Philbin. The show was subsequently renamed Live with Regis and Kelly, and it received a boost in the ratings not long after Ripa’s arrival.