‘Jeopardy!’: Why George Stephanopoulos ‘Supposes’ His Career as a Journalist Helped Him Prepare to Guest Host

by Josh Lanier

George Stephanopoulos has had an interesting career. The 60-year-old co-host of Good Morning America started in politics. He made a name for himself — and gained minor celebrity — as one of former President Bill Clinton’s 1992 campaign heads, and serving as his press secretary after that. Then he joined the gaggle of reporters. He thinks his years on that side of the microphone might help him out as the guest host of Jeopardy!

Stephanopoulos told Jeopardy! producers in his personal interview that being a journalist gave him a special insight into the production of the show. The Rhode Scholar begins his week as host on Monday, July 12.

“As a journalist, I was incredibly impressed with the work that goes into creating the clues,” he said. “The research, the writing, that goes into (them). When you spend more time with the clues than just watching at home, you realize how much craft goes into making them. And how well-written they are, and how much everybody who works on them cares about them.”

Stephanopoulos will only have a week as Jeopardy! guest host. The first host so far not to get two. Producers are likely trying to fit in more guest hosts before naming a permanent replacement for Alex Trebek. The show’s executive producer has said Sony executives are using the guest-hosting appearances as auditions for the job.

The Wrap reported shortly after Trebek’s death last year that George Stephanopoulos was “lobbying hard” for the hosting job. Though, he later denied those reports.

Stephanopoulos’ Good Morning America co-host Robin Roberts will follow him at the lectern next week. You can see the full schedule of Jeopardy! guest hosts here.

Stephanopoulos Chooses Jeopardy! Charity

Every Jeopardy! guest host chooses a charity to highlight during their time on the show. The show will match the contestants’ winnings during their time as guest host, and donate that amount to the charity. George Stephanopoulos picked Share Our Strength, a non-profit that wants to end childhood hunger and poverty in the United States.

Stephanopoulos is following CNN’s Dr. Sanjay Gupta, who helped raise more than $230,000 for Odyssey Atlanta. Gupta said he chose the charity because of its commitment to children’s education. And with many students “losing a year” because of the pandemic, Gupta said programs like this are vital.

“Odyssey is a transformational academic experience designed to prepare, inspire, and support Atlanta public school students from underserved communities with the knowledge and skills they need to succeed from first grade through college and beyond,” its website says.

Dr. Mehmet Oz, the most controversial Jeopardy! host still holds the record for most money raised. No other guest host has been able to top the $268,000 he helped raise for HealthCorps.