Anderson Cooper's Early Life
I don't know about you guys, but whenever I see someone that is rich, or someone who comes from a rich family, I just naturally assume that their life has been easy. I made this assumption about Anderson Cooper because not only is he insanely rich and successful now, but he was also raised with an enormous amount of money.
Anderson was born to parents, Wyatt Cooper and Gloria Vanderbilt in 1976. His father was an actor and a writer, while his mother was a designer and an heiress. Anderson attended Yale University, and now most people know him from his reporting on CNN, and his show Anderson Cooper 360.
It's easy to look at Anderson's life now and think it is glamorous and easy, but he has had his fair share of obstacles that he's had to overcome.
When Anderson was only ten years old his father died during open heart surgery. Then a few years later his older brother, Carter Cooper, committed suicide by jumping off his moms 14th story New York city apartment building.
These deaths in the family were very tragic for Anderson, but they also fueled his drive for a news career. In a quote from Biography.com Anderson said: “I became interested in questions of survival: why some people survive and others don’t...covering wars just seemed logical.”
Anderson’s mom had always told him that she would pay for him to get through college but after that he was on his own when it came to finances. So, once he graduated, Anderson tried desperately to get an entry level job at ABC News.
In a commencement speech he gave in 2010, he said, if no one was willing to give him a chance as a reporter, he’d have to take a chance. Anderson wanted to be a war correspondent, a journalist who covers wars, so he decided to just start living in war zones. His friend made him a fake press pass and he snuck into places like Burma, Somalia, and Iraq. He would video tape himself in these places with bullets flying by and because he was in such a dangerous area, he had very little competition from other reporters. He was willing to sleep on the ground and live on only a few dollars a day in order to sell his videos to news stations for relatively cheap.
This bravery and dedication soon led to Anderson getting hired by ABC News as a correspondent and then by CNN in 2002. Currently, Anderson makes $11 million annually at CNN, plus bonuses. His net worth is $100 million. He quickly made a name for himself and gained a fan base, but this led to another obstacle Anderson would have to overcome.
According to the New York Times, Anderson Cooper is “the most prominent openly gay journalist on American television.” but this wasn't always the case. Anderson tried to keep his personal life private for as long as he could, he didn't think it was anyone else’s business if he was gay, but he realized that by not talking about it, people started to think he was uncomfortable or ashamed of who he was. This was completely untrue. So Anderson ended up coming out with a statement saying that he is gay, he’s always been gay and he couldn't be happier or more proud of who he is. He's been in a relationship with Benjamin Maisani since 2009, and they currently live together in Greenwich Village. They don't have any children, but are open to the idea.
In a quote he stated, "I have always been very open and honest about this part of my life with my friends, my family, and my colleagues. In a perfect world, I don’t think it’s anyone else’s business, but I do think there is value in standing up and being counted. I’m not an activist, but I am a human being and I don’t give that up by being a journalist."
As you can see, Anderson Cooper’s life has been anything but easy: from the deaths in his family, struggles with his career, and the publicity of his personal life. There is no doubt, though, that Anderson Cooper is who he is today because of the obstacles he had to overcome when he was younger.