- Full Name: Howard Allan Stern
- Born: January 12, 1954
- Place of Birth: Jackson Heights (New York City), New York
- Occupation: Radio/TV host, author, actor, photographer, producer
- Marital Status: Married
Howard Stern’s Net Worth History:
With a stated goal of working on live radio since age five, Howard Stern started talking on radio in college and has never looked back. He soon became known for a willingness to talk frankly about controversial, often offensive topics on the air. Fines for “indecency” generated publicity and raised Stern’s salary on radio networks that would broadcast his show at all. Forbes reports his current annual salary as about $95 million, $15 million from “America’s Got Talent” alone…and he’s still angling for a bigger share of the income from Sirius XM Radio, which has allowed him freedom from censorship as a major shareholder.
About Howard Stern:
Always an extrovert, Howard Stern learned early to call attention to himself by being as obnoxious as seemed necessary. Tastelessness of every kind, like an obituary critique (rather than a tribute) to the murdered singer Selena in which Stern proclaimed that “Spanish people…have no depth,” caused him to be fined and fired many times, but the penalties only generated publicity for his next media venture, and his wealth kept growing. (Meanwhile, Stern apologized–in Spanish–to “those who loved Selena,” describing his insults as satire. A warrant was issued for his arrest for disorderly conduct, as in inciting mourners to acts of rage; he was not arrested.)
However high his income from radio and TV shows, books, videos, and movies has been, Stern is also an investor. His best known investment was probably in Sirius XM Radio, where he’s currently making news by suing for bigger returns from his stock in the company. (“Everything irritates me. That’s who I am,” Stern publicly commented on Twitter.) Though one recent investment blog post asks “Who the — is advising Howard Stern?”, he seems to have done quite well at making investments that pay off.
Defying the conventional wisdom that those seeking success in the entertainment field should make everyone feel good at all times, Stern has always billed himself as “the shock jock,” accepted the nickname “How Weird,” and allowed his rush hour radio broadcasts to be classified as “perversity.” Perhaps the secret to his success (beyond the basic idea of finding a niche and dominating it) has been a well developed sense of when and where to give offense. Victims of Stern’s raunchy sense of humor are usually “big enough to take it,” as his insults generate publicity and sympathy for fellow entertainers. People who prefer tasteful radio shows secure a niche audience who listen to Stern’s show daily…and people are relieved to find that Stern can be relatively polite, if not necessarily kind, to contestants on “America’s Got Talent.”
Stern has filed for formal ownership of his self-proclaimed title as “King of All Media.” He has described writing a full-length book, Private Parts, as the hardest job he’s ever done. (It sold over a million copies in two weeks.) When this autobiography was made into a movie in which Stern played himself, he was nominated for awards both as “Best New Actor” and as “Worst New Star.” (The movie earned $42.1 million.) He has written another volume of memoirs, Miss America. His Howard Stern Production Company has yet to release a film, but has produced several TV show episodes and videos, including a “bongo” video in which live participants were spanked in time to music. (The video earned over $10 million.) Stern has even been a vocalist, appearing on a parody album called “Fifty Ways to Rank Your Mother” and the sound track for the Private Parts movie.
Radio and television may have room for only one bad boy like Howard Stern, but playing the bad boy has paid him well.