Mervyn Griffin created the TV game show Wheel of Fortune which made it to the screen for the first time in 1975. But, for a great majority of the fans of the show, one of its co-hosts, Vanna White, may as well be its sole owner, all for the effervescence and unique vigor she tends to bring to every episode. She is also noted especially for her consistency in the program all these years (although you’d hardly ever hear her speak) and considering the number of years she has been seen on the show, side-by-side with her youthful looks and airs that never seem to subside, Vanna White’s age has actually been a subject of many discussions.
How old is the TV star really and for how long has she been on Wheel of Fortune? These and similar questions have been asked about Vanna in recent times. Here are the facts you need to know.
How Old Is Vanna White?
The TV star was born as Vanna Marie Rosich on February 18, 1957. Her birthplace is Conway Horry County in South Carolina, USA. The current coastal tourist city of North Myrtle Beach is where most of the stunner’s upbringing took place. Although Vanna White’s parents (Joan and Miguel Rosich) divorced when the future TV star was still less than 3 years of age, she is grateful to have had a caring stepfather in Herbert Stackley White Jr, who worked as a realtor in North Myrtle Beach. Eventually, Vanna would be taking her step-father’s surname.
While growing up, Vanna never expected to work on TV. Instead, after high school, she trained to become a fashion designer at the Atlanta School of Fashion. Then, her exquisite beauty attracted modeling opportunities to her which she didn’t hesitate to exploit. She also received a couple of minor roles in both films and TV before she finally got her Wheel of Fortune job.
At the age of 33, in 1990, Vanna White recorded another major mileage in her life when she married George San Pietro, a restaurant owner. The couple welcomed a son named Nicholas, two years into their marriage (1992) and a daughter named Giovanna who came along 5 years later on (1997). Then, they divorced in another 5 years in 2002.
How Old Was Vanna White When She Started On Wheel of Fortune?
Vanna White got her Wheel of Fortune job in 1982 at the age of 25. Although she said in a recent interview that she never expected to get the job, it seems as though the job sought her out instead.
In what may seem rhythmic, Vanna White was a contestant on the then CBS game show The Price Is Right, two years before she landed her job on Wheel of Fortune. That was in June 1980. Although she was not a winner in that episode on The Price Is Right, she left a lasting impression that has remained a reference point since then, especially once she began to get prominent via Wheel of Fortune. Not only was she among the first four contestants that day, but she manifested her signature energy when she ran briskly to take her position in the front row behind bidding podiums. Her demeanor was so spontaneous, passionate, and unforgettable that a clip of the scene would be featuring in a documentary in commemoration of the silver anniversary of The Price Is Right in 1996.
How Long Has She Been On Wheel Of Fortune?
In October 1982, the original hostess of Wheel of Fortune Susan Stafford left the show to pursue her academic career, creating a need for an adequate replacement. Out of over 200 ladies who applied for the job, only three (including Vanna White) were taken eventually to fill in the position temporarily. Three months later, Vanna became the only regular hostess of Wheel of Fortune out of the three ladies earlier chosen. So far, she has been doing the job for over 35 years!
Vanna began to serve on the game show when it aired on NBC and she has remained with them through its days on the CBS Channel and now in its syndication. She has since earned a number of recognitions. Of particular significance was when she entered the Guinness Book of World Record’s as ‘television’s most frequent clapper’ in 1992 with an average of 720 claps per episode. Her current contract on the show will expire in 2022 with a hope for renewal.