Gerald Michael Rivera (born July 4, 1943) better known as Geraldo Rivera is an American attorney, reporter, author, and talk show host. Rivera hosts the newsmagazine program Geraldo at Large and appears regularly on Fox News Channel. He is also well known from his history as a reporter and TV personality, and as the host of the talk show Geraldo from 1987 to 1998.
Rivera was born at Beth Israel Medical Center in New York City, New York, the son of Lillian (née Friedman), a waitress, and Cruz "Allen" Rivera (October 1, 1915 – November 1987), a restaurant worker and cab driver. Rivera's father was a Catholic Puerto Rican, and his mother is of Ashkenazi Russian Jewish descent. He was raised "mostly Jewish" and had a Bar Mitzvah ceremony. He grew up in Brooklyn and West Babylon, New York, where he attended West Babylon High School. Rivera's family was sometimes subjected to prejudice and racism, and took to spelling their surname as "Riviera" because they thought it sounded less ethnic.
From September 1961 to May 1963, he attended the State University of New York Maritime College, where he was a member of the rowing team. In 1965, Rivera graduated from the University of Arizona with a B.S. degree in business administration, and he played goalie on the lacrosse team. After a brief career in law enforcement, wherein he served the New York City Police Department as an investigator, Rivera entered law school. He received his J.D. from Brooklyn Law School in 1969 near the top of his class; following graduation, he held a Reginald Heber Smith Fellowship in poverty law at the University of Pennsylvania Law School in the summer of 1969 before being admitted to the New York State Bar later that year...
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