Oprah Winfrey to Exit WeightWatchers Board, Donate Shares to Black History Museum

Oprah Winfrey wearing a Louis Vuitton dress, Manolo Blahnik shoes, and Chopard jewels arrives at the 81st Annual Golden Globe Awards held at The Beverly Hilton Hotel on January 7, 2024 in Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, California, United States. — Photo by Image Press Agency.

Oprah Winfrey is leaving the board of directors at WeightWatchers after revealing she used a weight loss drug to slim down.

Winfrey has been a board member and spokesperson for the weight loss giant since 2015.

But on Feb. 28, the company announced the media mogul informed the board she would not seek re-election at the annual shareholders meeting in May.

In a statement, Winfrey said she’ll continue to “advise and collaborate” with WeightWatchers.

“Weight health is a critically important topic and one that needs to be addressed at a broader scale. I plan to participate in a number of public forums and events where I will be a vocal advocate in advancing this conversation,” she said.

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Winfrey added that she plans to donate her shares to the National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC).

“I have been a long-time supporter of this worthy organization, and I am proud to continue my support,” she said.

According to the WW board, Winfrey is making the donation to NMAAHC to highlight the contributions of African Americans and to “eliminate any perceived conflict of interest around her taking weight loss medications.”

“Oprah has been an inspiring presence and passionate advocate for our members, providing critical insights and counsel that has helped shape WeightWatchers over these last 8 years,” said Thilo Semmelbauer, chairman of the board. “What I know for sure, we will dearly miss her presence on the board.”

According to the Reuters news agency, Winfrey owns 1.13 million WeightWatchers shares worth $6.34 million as of Jan. 1, 2024. The news outlet said shares of WW International plummeted 23.2 percent to $2.93 in early trading Thursday, following news that Winfrey would leave the board.

For decades, the superstar media personality has been public about her struggles to shed unwanted pounds.

In December while promoting The Color Purple, which she co-produced, the former talk show host showed off a slimmed down figure on the red carpet.

She then admitted using an unnamed weight loss drug as a “maintenance tool” in an interview with People magazine — after previously calling Ozempic “the easy way out.”

“The fact that there’s a medically approved prescription for managing weight and staying healthier, in my lifetime, feels like relief, like redemption, like a gift,” Winfrey told People. “And not something to hide behind and once again be ridiculed for.”

“It was public sport to make fun of me for 25 years,” she added. “I have been blamed and shamed, and I blamed and shamed myself.”