Gretchen Carlson

TV journalist, women's empowerment advocate
Gretchen Carlson is a tireless advocate for workplace equality and women's empowerment.

Why you should listen

Named one of TIME's 100 Most Influential People in the World for 2017, Gretchen Carlson is one of the nation's most highly acclaimed journalists and a warrior for women. In 2016, Carlson became the face of sexual harassment in the workplace after her lawsuit against Fox News Chairman and CEO Roger Ailes paved the way for thousands of other women facing harassment to tell their stories. Carlson's advocacy put her on the cover of TIME, and her new book, Be Fierce: Stop Harassment and Take Your Power Back, joined the New York Times best-seller list the week it was published. She became a columnist for TIME's online "Motto" newsletter in 2017, focusing on gender and empowerment issues.

Carlson's ongoing work on behalf of women includes advocating for arbitration reform on Capitol Hill; in 2018, she plans to testify before Congress about workplace inequality and forced arbitration clauses in employment contracts. Carlson also created the Gift of Courage Fund and the Gretchen Carlson Leadership Initiative to support empowerment, advocacy and anti-harassment programs for girls and underserved women.

Carlson hosted "The Real Story" on Fox News for three years; co-hosted "Fox and Friends" for seven years; and in her first book, Getting Real, became a national best-seller. She co-hosted "The Saturday Early Show" for CBS in 2000 and served as a CBS News correspondent covering stories including Geneoa's G-8 Summit, Timothy McVeigh’s execution, 9/11 from the World Trade Center and the Bush-Gore election. She started her reporting career in Richmond, Virginia, then served as an anchor and reporter in Cincinnati, Cleveland and Dallas, where she produced and reported a 30-part series on domestic violence that won several national awards.

An honors graduate of Stanford University, Carlson was valedictorian of her high school class and studied at Oxford University in England. A child prodigy on the violin, she performed as a soloist with the Minnesota Symphony Orchestra at age 13, and in 1989, became the first classical violinist to win the Miss America crown.

Ever grateful for the opportunities provided to her and imbued with a "never give up" attitude, Carlson has mentored dozens of young women throughout her career. She serves as a national trustee for the March of Dimes, a member of the board of directors for the Catherine Violet Hubbard Animal Sanctuary in Newtown, Connecticut and a trustee of Greenwich Academy, an all-girls preparatory day school in Greenwich, Connecticut. Carlson is married to sports agent Casey Close and mom to their two children.

Gretchen Carlson’s TED talks

More news and ideas from Gretchen Carlson


What’s the definition of feminism? 12 talks that explain it to you

December 24, 2017

Earlier this month, Merriam-Webster announced that 2017’s word of the year is feminism. Searches for the word on the dictionary website spiked throughout the year, beginning in January around the Women’s March, again after Kellyanne Conway said in an interview that she didn’t consider herself a feminist, and during some of feminism’s many pop culture […]

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Brand-new TED Talks from TEDWomen 2017: A note from the curator

December 1, 2017

This year’s TEDWomen in New Orleans was a truly special conference, at a vital moment, and I’m sure the ripples will be felt for a long time to come. The theme this year was bridges: we build them, we cross them, sometimes we even burn them. Our speakers talked about the physical bridges we need […]

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