10 Celebrities With Adoptive Parents

May 9, 2014  |  
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Not being born into a loving or financially stable family is a reality no child should have to experience, but thankfuly there are families out there willing to take a child in and show them unconditional love. Adoptive parents have taken the in many a child and given them a foundation that will carry them through life. These celebrities were raised by adoptive parents that gave them love, encouragement and a place to call home.

Kristin Chenoweth

Kristin Chenoweth was adopted soon after she was born in July 1968 in Broken Arrow, Oklahoma. She shared with Rosie O’Donnell her fear of finding her birth mother, “I was afraid that someone might come forward and that it either wouldn’t be true because it was a closed adoption, or it would be a door that I wanted to shut and couldn’t.” Being a Tony Award winning actress and singer, she does however want to know where she got her distinctive voice.

Nicole “Snooki” Polizzi

In the 1980s Snooki lived in the tumultuous climate of Chile and was given up for adoption. She says of her biological parents, “I was adopted at six months from Chile. [My biological parents] gave me up for a reason and I honestly love my parents. I have no desire to actually find out [about my biological parents].”

Rachel Crow

This former X-factor contestant is proud of her upbringing. She was adopted at six-months old due to unsafe living circumstances. She is an advocate for foster children around the world, saying “I want to build a foundation that makes them feel good about themselves- whether they want to sing or act or whether they want to be in sports or go to Harvard.I want to make sure they get to chase their dreams.”  Rachel is even prouder of her adopted parents, adding “I want to build a foundation that makes them feel good about themselves- whether they want to sing or act or whether they want to be in sports or go to Harvard. I want to make sure they get to chase their dreams.”

Les Brown

If you’ve ever listened to any of Les Brown’s motivational speeches you know of  his love for his adopted mom, Mamie Brown. He was born in an abandoned building in Miami, Florida. At six-weeks old he was adopted by Mamie Brown, a 38-year old domestic worker.  “All that I am and all that I ever hoped to be, I owe to my mother,” he said of his mother. He also refers to himself as “Mrs. Mamie Brown’s Baby Boy.”

Jamie Foxx

 Shortly after his birth, Jamie Foxx was adopted and raised by his mother’s adoptive parents. In his 2005 Oscar acceptance speech he thanked his grandmother/adoptive mother for showing him how to behave and being his first acting coach. “She would whup me. And she could get an Oscar for the way she whupped me because she was great at it. And after she whipped me, she would talk to me and tell me why she whipped me, said, “I want you to be a southern gentleman.” And she still talks to me now; only now she talks to me in my dreams. And I can’t wait to go to sleep tonight because we got a lot to talk about. I love you.”

Alonzo Mourning

NBA player Alonzo Mourning was 12 years old when his parents divorced, subsequently leaving him to live with family friends who happened to be foster parents.He spent the next 6 years in and out of foster homes. Though he aged out of foster care, Alonzo says his first foster mother encouraged him to do his best, which led him to become the man he is today.  He has been an adoption advocate through Alonzo Mourning Charities,which offers resources and services for children nationwide.

Tommy Davidson

Davidson was adopted when he was 2-years-old by Barbara Davidson, a civil rights worker. His adopted parents are white and he often uses his experience as material in his comedy acts. 

Darryl McDaniel (of Run DMC)

Darryl didn’t find out he was adopted until he was 35-years old while working on his autobiography. He filmed his journey for his birth mother in the Vh1 documentary “DMC: My Adoption Journey,” which aired in February 2006. Darryl was saddened when he found the adoption records were closed. He eventually found his birth parents and says it filled a void and was a new beginning for him.

Daunte Culpepper

In 1977, NFL player Daunte Culpepper’s teenage mother gave birth to him in prison.  He was later adopted by a woman named Emma Culpepper, who’d also adopted fifteen other children. “She was an angel, not only to me but to everyone she came in contact with, and she was always on a mission to help people,” the NFL quarterback said Sunday. “She was an angel, not only to me but to everyone she came in contact with.  If not for her I don’t know where I’d be.” Daunte say of Mrs. Culpepper. Daunte is now a spokesperson for the African American Adoption Agency in St. Paul, Minnesota.


Victoria Rowell

Actress Victoria Rowell was just 16 days old when she and her siblings entered the foster care system. She aged out of the foster systme, but says she was raised by women she says made a difference in her life. In her memoir, The Women Who Raised Me, she tells the stories of these women. She is a dedicated advocate for foster and adopted children. Her foundation,  Rowell Foster Children’s Positive Plan, is dedicated to giving foster children a foundation through art and athletics.


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