In 2008, Harpo Productions debuted its first-ever primetime television series, Oprah's Big Give. It was a pressure-filled high-stakes reality show based on the idea of giving back. Ten contestants set out on a nationwide adventure to out-give each other. Every week, the nail-biting competition got tougher until it was down to the final three.
"The whole idea of the show, the Big Give, was to let people know how great it feels to give," Oprah says. "You know, I love giving things to people, but what I receive in return is far greater than even the gift that you give. That's the beauty of giving."
Before crowning the show's winner in the finale, Oprah revealed the Big Give's biggest surprise: The winner would go home with $1 million—half to give away, half to keep. In the end, the winner was Stephen Paletta, a small businessman and devoted father of three.
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