Howard Stern is an American radio and television personality, producer, author, actor and photographer. He is best known for his long-running radio show “The Howard Stern Show”, which gained popularity for featuring blunt and shocking commentary on taboo topics. Stern has amassed significant fame and fortune over his decades-long career.
|$80 million + per year
|$7 Million +
|6′ 5″ (1.96 m)
|$100 Million +
|Date Of Birth:
|Jackson Heights, New York, United States
|Ray Stern, Ben Stern
Howard Allan Stern was born on January 12, 1954 in Queens, New York to a Jewish family. His father Ben operated a radio equipment store while his mother Ray was an office clerk. Stern always had an interest in radio from a young age.
He studied communications at Boston University, working at the campus radio station WTBU. He graduated magna cum laude in 1976. During his time in college, he would hone his on-air persona doing prank calls and developing his blunt style.
Radio Career Beginnings
After college, Stern began working in radio while pursuing a master’s degree at Boston University. His first radio jobs were in the Boston area like WRNW and WCCC.
In 1979, he landed a morning position at WWWW in Michigan where his airwave antics and provocative style started to build an audience. He was eventually fired from WWWW for a controversial bit mentioning God and hemorrhoids. Despite the early firing, his time in Michigan showed promise as an incendiary on-air talent.
Move to WXRK in New York City
In 1985, Stern got hired at rock station WXRK (K-Rock) in New York City. This proved to be his major career breakthrough.
At K-Rock, Stern built his radio show into a hub of tabloid chatter, bad language and envelope-pushing. He formed a colorful cast of characters on air which he dubbed the “Howard Stern Show” crew. This included writer Fred Norris, producer Gary Dell’Abate “Baba Booey”, comedian Jackie Martling, and many more regulars.
The show became a phenomenon as Stern took provocative topics head on with blunt frankness. His ratings soared as fans were drawn to his unpredictable style where anything could be talked about. Despite heavy fines from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) for borderline obscene content, The Howard Stern Show kept growing more popular and successful from the mid 80’s through the 90’s.
Howard Stern on Television
In addition to radio, Stern crossed over to television with projects like Fartman and Howard Stern’s Negligeé and Underpants Party in the late 80’s.
In the 90’s, The Howard Stern Radio Show aired late nights on E! Entertainment from 1994 to 2005. This brought a simulcast visual element where fans could tune in for interviews, comedy sketches and girls.
Stern also tried his hand at game shows serving as host for beauty pageant spoof Howard Stern’s Miss Howard Sternn Show and late night dating show The Evaluators on syndicated TV. Both shows were short-lived but highlighted Stern’s becoming more of a household name in American pop culture.
$500 Million Deal with SiriusXM Radio
In 2005, on the heels of increasing FCC fines reaching up to $1.5 million, Stern announced he was leaving terrestrial radio completely. He signed an initial 5-year $500 million dollar contract with the subscription based satellite radio company Sirius.
The record setting deal paid Stern $100 million per year. This enabled Stern to bring his radio show and cast over to completely uncensored satellite airwaves starting January 2006 on Sirius’ newly created Howard 100 channel.
The move to satellite radio saw Stern in his element with zero FCC restrictions. Current events, racy topics and celebrity interviews mixed with show comedy bits continued attracting major audiences to SiriusXM for well over a decade and counting. Stern has repeatedly re-signed with the platform which he credits with creative freedom and aiding his longevity as a relevant voice on the air.
America’s Got Talent Judge
Further showing his mainstream appeal in 2010, the “shock jock” Howard Stern was named a judge on primetime talent show America’s Got Talent airing on NBC. He sat alongside Howie Mandel and Sharon Osbourne across multiple seasons evaluating singers, dancers, comedians and novelty acts. Stern’s honest and blunt critiques of contestants made him an instant fit for reality TV.
His increased visibility judging AGT alongside satellite listeners cemented Stern’s reputation beyond just a racy radio “king” showing his wit and entertainment skills. All the while still delivering hours of daily uncensored show programming to faithful fans.
Howard Stern Today
As of 2023, at age 69 Howard Stern continues to broadcast The Howard Stern Show primarily from home since Covid-19 restrictions began. After a nearly 10-year run as an America’s Got Talent judge, Stern departed the series in 2015. Stern’s final contract with SiriusXM was renewed at the end of 2020 into 2027 for a reported $120 million per year.
For superfans, Stern also hosts Howard Stern on Demand archive of classic show segments available on SiriusXM. Additionally there is Howard Stern Comes Again and Howard Stern Comes Again, Further Adventures From the Big House – a pair of bestselling books featuring radio show transcripts.
A feature documentary Howard Stern Comes Again was released in 2022 chronicling his life and career through celebrity interviews. Off air, Howard Stern maintains a low profile focusing time between New York City, South Florida and the Hamptons with wife Beth Ostrosky, a model and animal rights activist he married in 2008.
Howard Stern Net Worth Milestones
- In 1995, Forbes estimated Stern’s annual earnings at $12 million per year
- His peak salary at terrestrial radio in 2004 reached $20 million annually
- Stern’s original 5-year satellite radio contract in 2004 paid $500 million, or $100 million per year
- In 2010, he became the highest paid personality on radio earning $75 million a year
- In 2013, his net worth passed $500 million.
- In 2015 Stern renewed with SiriusXM at same $100 million annual rate through 2020
- Estimates put Stern earning over $90 million per year during current SiriusXM contract signed in late 2020
- As of 2023, Howard Stern’s net worth is estimated between $650 million to $800 million.
The bulk of his net worth comes from SiriusXM radio contracts and American’s Got Talent salary for years as judge. Stern also owns several New York condos he rents out, a large mansion in the Hamptons purchased for over $50 million in 2007, as well as lucrative endorsement deals and investments.
Stern married Beth Ostrosky, an actress and model, in 2008. Though he has three children from his previous marriage which ended in 2001 after 21 years.
How Tall is Howard Stern?
Stern is frequently referred to as lanky and tall when making appearances or interviews.
*Howard Stern’s height is 6 feet 5 inches (1.96 meters) tall.
That height towers over his radio show co-host Robin Quivers whom he has worked with since 1981. He’s also exactly a foot taller than sidekick producer Gary “Baba Booey” Dell’Abate who is around 5 foot 5 inches tall.
Stern has jokingly stated his height at 6 foot 7 inches at times when exaggerating facts or details for comedy. In reality when measured barefoot he is closer to 6 feet 5 inch mark.
Howard Stern Age / Birthday & Early Life
- Howard Stern was born on January 12, 1954 (as of 2023 he is 69 years old)
- His zodiac sign is Capricorn
- Stern was raised in Roosevelt, Long Island in New York
- His parents are Ray and Ben Stern – a homemaker and radio engineer
- He has two siblings – sister Ellen and brother Larry
- Stern credits his childhood hero as Soupy Sales and key influence growing up was radio legend Bob Grant
- He attended Boston University graduating Magna Cum Laude in 1976
Key Howard Stern Show Moments
- Fines from the FCC: Stern built his boundary-testing radio career accruing record fines up to $2.5 million by 2004 from FCC for show content
- Run for Governor: As a protest against being fined, Stern ran for Governor of New York in 1994 on Libertarian ticket but voters viewed campaign as stunt
- Fartman: One of Stern’s early signature bits debuted at 1992 MTV Video Music Awards dressed in costume with loud flatulence
- Celebrity Interviews: Stern’s frank conversational interview style has attracted big names from Madonna to Donald Trump spilling details
- Lesbian Dial-a-Date: Calling up random women to date a lesbian guest on-air led to some of Stern’s most outrageous bits through the decades
- Sybian Rides: Female guests challenged to stay poised answering his questions while straddling a vibrating motor called the Sybian
- __ evaluations:__ Stern evaluating women contestants on their appearance across categories like face, features and figure.
- Marge Schott Controversy: Stern accused of antisemitism letting controversial MLB owner rant Jewish slurs and stereotypes on air in 1996