They say that when you hit rock bottom, the only other way to go is up, and that is the life story of Glenn Beck. Today he is recognized as an American television producer, radio host, and CEO of a broadcasting network. However, do not let the success fool you into believing that things have always been rosy for Beck. His childhood was plagued with violence, and his youth with depression and suicidal thoughts. Luckily, he never went through with his suicide mission, and after working hard to build a career in broadcasting, Glenn Beck’s net worth stood at $250 million as of 2017. Here’s more regarding his journey to prosperity.
A Life Marred by Alcoholism and Violence
Beck was born in 1964 to Bill and Mary, who raised him and his sister in Mount Vernon. He got an early start to learning work ethics by working at the family’s bakery. Unfortunately, his parents’ marriage did not last because of his mother’s alcoholism. After they divorced, Beck and his sister lived with their mother, who continued drinking and abused the children. Family life did not get any better because Mary got a violent boyfriend. As Beck told KSDK, he would often see his mother with a black eye and bruises all over her body. Despite Mary being advised to leave her boyfriend, she could not see his effect on her children. Maybe one day, it dawned on her that her children were better off without her. Therefore, she and her boyfriend went out on a small boat and never returned; Beck believes she committed suicide.
Life Takes a Wrong Turn
You would think that since Beck had learned from seeing first-hand how alcohol can ruin people’s lives, he would stay away from it. Unfortunately, he ended up in the same boat as his mother. Since two more family members had committed suicide, Beck felt depressed and began using alcohol to heal his wounds. He still managed to graduate from high school and got gigs working at radio stations. He became quite a successful young man and even got married to his first wife, Claire. They had two daughters, one of whom has cerebral palsy. Maybe he felt the weight of the world on his shoulders due to the demands of his job, marriage, and caring for the child. As a result, Beck continued with his substance abuse, and like his mother, he too was divorced because of it.
As he told Today, he had been diagnosed with clinical depression even before his divorce. He had even tried crashing his car to commit suicide, but he never could bring himself to do it. After the divorce, the depression was at its peak with him being all alone, and he beat himself up, wondering why he could not save his marriage. For a long time, he blamed his mother’s suicide for how his life had turned out, saying that he never could get over it. However, after the medication began working, he realized he only had himself to blame. His mother was gone, and the decisions he made impacted his life and those he loved. It still took a long while for him to fully take charge of his life because he confessed that even though he was taking depression medicine, he was, on the other hand, killing himself with alcohol.
Getting His Life on Track
Despite the substance abuse, Beck went to college but dropped out after a semester. He said he did not fit in, but in other instances, he said it is because he could not afford tuition and did not want to ask anyone for assistance. Whatever the case, the wake-up call to quit drinking came when he had to lie to his daughters about a bedtime story. His doctor had warned him that he would not live beyond six more months if he continued drinking, but Beck did not take heed. It is only Beck’s inability to remember a bedtime story that woke him up to admit he needed help. He joined Alcoholics Anonymous. Before long, he got married to his second wife, got steady jobs, and became a force to reckon with in the media industry. Beck confesses that his mother influenced his passion for radio because when he was eight, she gave him a collection of drama and comedy productions dating back to the 1930s and 1940s.
Becoming a Top-Rated Radio Host
In the 1990s, Beck co-hosted a Top 40 FM radio show, and he admitted he was paid pretty well to go to local businesses, shake hands and sign autographs. While that was only at a local level, in 2000, he climbed the ladder to the national spotlight when he got his own show, “The Glenn Beck Program” at a radio station in Tampa. It was launched in 47 stations and later aired across 100 stations internationally. By 2012, the program aired on 400 stations and was the third most popular show in the US. He even signed a $100 million deal with Premiere Networks Inc. According to Business Insider, Beck was making$2.5 million while he was on Fox News and averaged 2.2 million daily viewers. By 2018 he was listed among the highest-paid radio hosts with an annual income of $8.5 million, which had gone down from $10 million the previous year. As if that was not enough, Beck had his Blaze TV (formerly GBTV), a digital streaming channel that subscribers pay to watch.
When he left Fox News ad launched GBTV, it was expected to rake in $40 million thanks to subscriptions and advertisers fees. He is determined to keep it growing, and in March 2020, Beck launched Blaze Live, an ad-supported 24/7 streaming channel. It is part of Pluto TV, a free channel aimed at increasing the number of subscribers to Beck’s Blaze TV. Beck is ambitious, and he still managed to author books that got to be New York Best Sellers in four separate categories. That translates to quite a significant figure from the royalties received.