Not many people on the planet can go by a singular name. There’s Beyoncé, Madonna, Rihanna, Adele, Lorde … and Omarosa? Yes, we’re referring to Omarosa Manigault, the woman who made a (singular) name for herself as the villainous character on multiple seasons and iterations of the reality TV show Donald Trump famously hosted before becoming president, The Apprentice.
Naturally, Omarosa stepped away from her life on screen to take on a role within the Trump administration following the 2016 election, only to then step away from the public eye to … wait, what exactly has she been up to?
This week, everyone’s talking about the primetime star-turned-politico, and for dramatic reasons. But before we get to that, here’s everything you need to know about her.
The 44-year-old was born in Youngstown, Ohio to Theresa M. Manigault, author of Art My Way: Momarosa’s Guide to Living a Vibrant Energetic Life, and the late Jack Thomas Manigault Sr. Omarosa got her bachelor’s degree in broadcast journalism from Central State University, and later got her Ph.D. in communications from Howard University. She also has a preacher’s license.
Omarosa eventually found her way to The Apprentice’s debut season in 2004. She become infamous for being hard to work with, and also for the fact that Trump never hired her on the show — which was the entire point of the competition. In addition to appearing on the debut season, she later starred on The Celebrity Apprentice, All-Star Celebrity Apprentice, and, separately, Celebrity Big Brother. She was once named one of TV Guide’s Most Evil Reality TV Villains.
Omarosa has a history of dramatic romantic and personal relationships. In 2011, her brother was murdered after reportedly being caught in a “lovers quarrel.” She married Aaron Stallworth, only to then split from him in 2005. Two months after becoming engaged to actor Michael Clarke Duncan in 2012, he died of a heart attack.
In April 2017, Omarosa wed Pastor John Allen Newman and the event, interestingly enough, was held at Trump International Hotel in Washington, D.C.
Why Is Everyone Talking About Her?
Though Omarosa initially worked on Hillary Clinton’s “Ready for Hillary” campaign during the 2016 election, she eventually switched sides, deciding to support Trump’s candidacy. Her switch paid off, as she was later hired as the Director of Communications for the Office of Public Liaison at the White House.
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In December 2017, she resigned from her position, though it was later revealed that her exit may have been more forced than she let on. While White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders initially said in a statement that Omarosa left “to pursue other opportunities,” Politico later reported that she was let go for abusing a White House car service, which led her to “storm the White House residence.” In February, White House Deputy Press Secretary Raj Shah said she was fired, though she has denied that.
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So what does this have to do with anything?
Omarosa is gearing up to release a new tell-all book about her former boss titled Unhinged on Aug. 14, and, according to The Daily Beast, she managed to secretly record discussions she had with Trump while working in his administration. Sources told CNN that the tapes document “what she details in the book,” so you’ll likely be hearing them very soon. Her first interview to discuss the book will be on Meet the Press on Sunday.
In a similarly shady vein, just last month, tapes secretly recorded by Trump’s former personal attorney Michael Cohen were released, in which the dastardly duo can be heard discussing payments to former Playboy model Karen McDougal, who claims she had an affair with Trump in 2006. Trump has denied the affair.