Bush in 2006
William Hall Bush|
October 13, 1971
New York City, New York, U.S.
|Alma mater||Colby College|
|Occupation||Television presenter and radio personality|
|Spouse(s)||Sydney Davis (m. 1998)|
|Relatives||See Bush family|
William Hall "Billy" Bush (born October 13, 1971) is an American radio and television host, and a member of the Bush family that includes two former U.S. presidents and other nationally known political figures spanning several generations.
After first appearing as a correspondent on Access Hollywood from 2001 to 2004, Bush became a primary anchor of the program in 2004. Bush also hosted The Billy Bush Show, a nationally syndicated talk and music radio show that aired from 2008 to 2014. He departed Access Hollywood in 2016, after being named a co-host of the third hour of Today. In October 2016, he became the subject of controversy when a 2005 recording surfaced of Donald Trump and him having a lewd conversation; due to this incident Bush was suspended and later resigned from Today.
William Hall Bush was born in Manhattan, New York City, the son of Josephine (née Bradley) and Jonathan Bush. Billy Bush's uncle (his father's older brother) is George H. W. Bush, the 41st President of the United States. George W. Bush, the 43rd President, and former Florida governor Jeb Bush are Billy Bush's first cousins.
Bush attended middle school at St. Bernard's School in Manhattan and high school at St. George's School in Middletown, Rhode Island. He graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in International Studies and Government from Colby College in 1994. He was also a four-year letterman and a two-time co-captain as a junior and senior with the Mules' men's lacrosse team. He is currently 4th (182), 8th (97) and 4th (85) in career points, goals and assists respectively in program history and was a first-team All-NESCAC in 1994.
Bush began his career hosting the afternoon drive show on WLKZ-FM in Wolfeboro, New Hampshire, later moving to Washington, D.C., where he hosted the midday show on WARW-FM. In March 1997, Bush joined WWZZ-FM (Z104) in D.C. as host of Billy Bush and the Bush League Morning Show, which aired until January 2001.
Early television work
Bush joined Access Hollywood, a daily entertainment news magazine, as East Coast correspondent in December 2001. He was promoted to co-anchor in June 2004.
While working at Access Hollywood, he was present at high-profile red carpet events including the Golden Globes, Grammys, and Academy Awards, and hosted ABC's live pre-show for the 2004, 2005 and 2006 Academy Awards and the 2006 Emmy Red Carpet Special.
Bush was a reporter for NBC at the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens, and was the host for Access Hollywood's coverage of the 2006 Winter Olympics in Torino as well as the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing. In addition, Bush hosted the reality competition Grease: You're the One that I Want! on NBC in 2007, and stood in for Meredith Vieira for a week of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire shows on April 21–25, 2008.
He returned to radio with The Billy Bush Show, a nightly talk radio and entertainment interview show. It airs from KBIG in Los Angeles and is syndicated by Westwood One. The show is written by Ryan Miller and produced by Corrin Barlow, while Bush and Access Hollywood executive producer Rob Silverstein are the show's executive producers. The show, which airs evenings Monday through Friday, focuses on the top entertainment stories and personalities in the news, and features celebrity guests and listener calls.
Bush co-hosted the Miss Universe pageant four times: in 2003 and 2004 with Daisy Fuentes; in 2005 with fellow Access Hollywood co-anchor Nancy O'Dell; and in 2009 with Claudia Jordan. He has also co-hosted the Miss USA pageant four times, with almost the same partners: in 2003 with Fuentes; 2004 and 2005 with O'Dell; and again in 2009, this time with Nadine Velazquez. After the 65th Annual Golden Globe Awards of 2008 were cancelled as a result of the 2007–08 Writers Guild of America strike, Bush co-hosted the 65th Annual Golden Globe Awards Announcement press conference with O'Dell on January 13, 2008.
Bush was named one of Esquire magazine's "10 Men" in July 2005.
From September 13, 2010, to October 2016, Bush co-hosted the syndicated national daily entertainment talk show Access Hollywood Live, along with co-host Kit Hoover. This show is a sister show of Access Hollywood, with host chat of popular topics and celebrity live interviews. Bush and Hoover traveled together to the UK to cover Prince William's wedding to Catherine Middleton, as part of the NBC team coverage.
Ryan Lochte controversy
Bush was the first reporter to interview U.S. Olympic Swimmer Ryan Lochte after the athlete claimed he was robbed at gunpoint in Rio de Janeiro during the 2016 Summer Olympics. Bush's due diligence as an interviewer was scrutinized after critics claimed Bush did not ask questions that would have shown Lochte’s story was fabricated. When details of Lochte's story began to fall apart, Matt Lauer re-interviewed the swimmer in a move that was seen as a snub to Bush. Bush garnered attention once again after he and Al Roker got into an argument during Olympic coverage on Today after Lochte was exposed. Bush defended Lochte, saying he lied about “some” details whereas Roker characterized Lochte's statement as a lie.
Trump tape scandal
On October 7, 2016, video footage was released of Donald Trump having a lewd conversation with Bush, with Trump either unaware or unconcerned that his microphone was active. Bush is heard laughing about Trump's failed effort to seduce a married woman, and joining in by commenting on actress Arianne Zucker's appearance, calling her "hot as shit." The video was made on the NBC Studios lot in the course of videotaping an Access Hollywood episode in mid-September 2005, promoting Trump's cameo appearance in an episode of daytime soap opera Days of Our Lives to promote The Apprentice. In the video, Trump discussed a failed attempt to seduce Bush's then-co-host Nancy O'Dell: "I moved on her, and I failed. I’ll admit it. I did try and fuck her. She was married." He also talked about stars groping women: "...you just kiss...when you're a star they let you do it. You can do anything...grab them by the pussy..."
Bush received criticism online and calls for his resignation from Today, with The Washington Post stating, "Bush’s public image was damaged—perhaps beyond repair." He issued an apology, stating: "Obviously I'm embarrassed and ashamed. It's no excuse, but this happened eleven years ago. I was younger, less mature, and acted foolishly in playing along. I'm very sorry." Bush was 33 at the time the video was made.
On October 9, 2016, NBC announced that Bush was suspended from Today for his role in the 2005 video. He was suspended pending an internal review, and NBC did not provide information about whether or when he would be coming back on-air.
On October 11, the New York Post reported that NBC was "negotiating his exit." On October 17, the media reported that Bush had officially resigned.
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- "Billy Bush, co-host of TODAY's third hour". TODAY.com. Retrieved October 12, 2016.
- Koblin, Josh (October 17, 2016). "Billy Bush Officially Departs NBC". The New York Times. Retrieved October 26, 2016.
- "A Bush cousin finds his TV niche". philly.com. Retrieved October 7, 2016.
- "Billy Bush: Biography". TV Guide. Retrieved October 5, 2009.
- Men's Lacrosse Alumni (1972-2016) – Colby College Athletics.
- Colby Men's Varsity Lacrosse Captains 1970–2016 – Colby College Athletics.
- Men's Lacrosse Individual Records & Honors – Colby College Athletics.
- "About Billy Bush". Westwood One/The Billy Bush Show. Archived from the original on October 2, 2009.
- "Billy Bush Biography". Yahoo!. Retrieved October 5, 2009.
- "The Bob Woodward of the Red Carpet". Esquire. July 1, 2005. Archived from the original on June 11, 2009.
- Hines, Ree (May 18, 2016). "TODAY anchors welcome Billy Bush: 'We're so happy he's joining our crew'". Today.com. Retrieved October 10, 2016.
- Prudom, Laura (August 22, 2016). "Willie Geist Leaving Third Hour of 'Today,' Billy Bush to Replace Him". Variety. Retrieved October 10, 2016.
- Chung, Jen. "Ryan Lochte: Rio Police Impersonator 'Cocked' Gun & 'Put It To My Forehead' During Robbery". Gothamist.com. Retrieved August 18, 2016.
- Contrera, Jessica (October 9, 2016). "NBC has suspended Billy Bush. But will he ever come back?". The Washington Post. Retrieved October 10, 2016.
- Emily Yahr, Elahe Izadi (October 7, 2016). "Billy Bush was already polarizing. His lewd Donald Trump conversation makes things much worse.". The Washington Post. Retrieved October 8, 2016.
- Hanson, Hilary (August 20, 2016). "Al Roker Goes In On Ryan Lochte, Becomes Internet Hero". The Huffington post. Retrieved October 10, 2016.
- Fahrenthold, David A. (October 7, 2016). "Trump recorded having extremely lewd conversation about women in 2005". Washington Post. Retrieved October 8, 2016.
- "Donald Trump, Billy Bush discussed Nancy O'Dell in leaked audio". USA Today. Retrieved October 8, 2016.
- Capelouto, Susanna. "Nancy O'Dell, the woman who rebuffed Trump". CNN. Turner Broadcasting System, Inc. Retrieved October 9, 2016.
- Michael M. Grynbaum, John Koblin (October 7, 2016). "Billy Bush Says He's Ashamed by Lewd Talk With Donald Trump". The New York Times. Retrieved October 8, 2016.
- Gold, Hadas (October 9, 2016). "Billy Bush suspended from 'Today' show". POLITICO. Retrieved October 10, 2016.
- "NBC insiders say Billy Bush will be fired". New York Post. October 11, 2016. Retrieved October 11, 2016.
- Hibberd, James (October 17, 2016). "Billy Bush officially out at Today". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved October 17, 2016.
- Puente, Maria (October 17, 2016). "Billy Bush is out at Today". USA Today. Retrieved October 17, 2016.
|Host of Let's Make a Deal
| Succeeded by|
Nancy O'Dell with Pat O'Brien
|Host of Access Hollywood
with Nancy O'Dell (2004–2009)
| Succeeded by|
Ali Landry and Deion Sanders
|Host of Miss USA
with Daisy Fuentes (2003)
with Nancy O'Dell (2004–2005)
| Succeeded by|
Nancy O'Dell and Drew Lachey
Phil Simms with Daisy Fuentes
|Host of Miss Universe
with Daisy Fuentes (2003–2004)
with Nancy O'Dell (2005)
| Succeeded by|
Nancy O'Dell with Carlos Ponce
Jerry Springer with Mel B
|Host of Miss Universe
with Claudia Jordan 2009
| Succeeded by|
Bret Michaels and Natalie Morales