Judith Ellen Light was born on the 9th February 1949, in Trenton, New Jersey USA. She is an actress and producer, probably best known over the years for her roles in the ABC soap opera “One Life to Live” (1977-1983), TV sitcom “Who’s the Boss?” (1984-1992), NBC crime drama “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit” (2002-2010), and ABC comedy-drama “Ugly Betty” (2006-2010). These hit series have certainly helped her increase her net worth. Light has been active in her career since 1968.
Have you ever wondered how rich Judith Light is, as of mid- 2016? According to authoritative sources, Light’s estimated net worth is $5 million. Although most of the money she has earned is thanks to TV shows, Light has also appeared in several movies. She adds more to her wealth with producing as well.
Judith Light Net Worth $5 Million
Judith Light was born to Sidney Light, an accountant, and Pearl Sue, a model, and is of the Jewish religion. After matriculating from St. Mary’s Hall-Doane Academy High School in 1966, Light attended Carnegie Mellon University and graduated with a drama degree. Soon after, she launched her career on the stage, and landed her first role in “Richard III” in 1970.
The famous Broadway was Judith Light’s next step, making her debut in “A Doll’s House” in 1975, anda year after, she starred in “Herzl”. Broadway wasn’t the only theater on her agenda; Light also had parts in Seattle Repertory Theatre and Milwaukee Repertory Theater. However, she went through a crisis in late 70’s after failing to land a role and even considered quitting acting for good.
Judith’s life changed when her agent called her to appear at the audition for the TV soap opera “One Life to Live” in 1977, starring Erika Slezak, Gerald Anthony, and Michael Storm. Light didn’t rated soap operas very highly, and she initially rejected the idea, but when heard that the daily salary was $350, she accepted the role of Karen Wolek. It was the breakthrough she had waited a long time for, as the show aired for six years, and Light’s role was quite lucrative, so she earned a significant amount of money.
After the series’ big success, Judith Light landed another leading role in the ABC sitcom “Who’s the Boss” in 1984. The show ran for eight years, and Light and co-star Tony Danza received a lot of positive critiques. During the filming of the series, Light also appeared in several television films including “Stamp of a Killer” (1987) with Jimmy Smits, “The Ryan White Story” (1989) alongside Lukas Haas, and “Wife, Mother, Murderer” (1991), directed by Mel Damski. These movies certainly increased her total net wealth.
The ’90’s weren’t as prolific as the 80’s, but Judith Light starred in a TV movie “Men Don’t Tell” (1993) with Peter Strauss, and “Too Close to Home” (1997), co-starring Ricky Schroder. She returned to the stage once again in 1999 when she starred in “Wit”, a Pulitzer Prize-winning play. Light then marked her television comeback, appearing in 25 episodes of “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit”, which aired from 2002 to 2010. In 2006, Light secured a part in another popular TV series – “Ugly Betty” – created by Fernando Gaitan. The show was an absolute hit and further improved Light’s net worth.
Judith Light was rather busy in the 2000s, and appeared in numerous films including “Ira & Abby” (2006) with Chris Messina and Jennifer Westfeldt, starred in an independent film called “Save Me” in 2007, directed by Robert Cary. and also had a part in the 2014 movie “Last Weekend”, playing opposite Patricia Clarkson. Most recently Judith has featured in the film “Digging For Fire” (2015), and she has also been in the regular cast of the TV series “Transparent” since 2014, which also added to her net worth.
Judith Light has received several awards, and the most notable are Daytime Emmy Awards for Outstanding Actress for “One Life to Live” in 1980 and 1981, Prism Awards for Best Performance in a Comedy Series for “Ugly Betty” in 2007, Tony Awards for Best Featured Actress in a Play for “Other Desert Cities” in 2012, and another Tony for Best Featured Actress in a Play for “The Assembled Parties” in 2013. In her personal life, Judith Light has been married to television actor Robert Desiderio since 1985. The pair doesn’t have any children and currently live in California. She is a gay rights and AIDS activist, and also speaks fluent French.
For three straight years she has been nominated for Broadway's Tony award for Best Performance by a Featured Actress in a Play, and has won twice for "Other Desert Cities" (2012) and "The Assembled Parties" (2013).
Nominated for 2013 Tony Award as Best Featured Actress for her role in Richard Greenberg's drama, "The Assembled Parties", on stage at the Samuel E. Friedman Theatre/Manhattan Theatre Club in New York City.
She played "Jeanne White" in the the made-for-TV movie The Ryan White Story (1989). She also spoke at the 20th anniversary of Ryan's death at Clowes Hall.
Born and raised in Trenton, New Jersey, her parents nurtured her interest in acting throughout her childhood and supported her decision to study in a summer program at Carnegie-Mellon University between her junior and senior years of high school. This experience prompted her to enroll in that institution where she earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree.
As a strong supporter of gay rights, she and husband Robert Desiderio honored with the Matthew Shepard Foundation's 1st Annual "Making a Difference" Award for their Longstanding Commitment to Erase Hate.
She stated the reason she never had children wasn't because she didn't want them, it was because if she wanted to have children she wanted to be a full-time mother and with an acting career she wouldn't have been able to do that.
Shaved her head completely to star as Vivian Bearing (a literary academic dying of ovarian cancer) in the off-Broadway show, "Wit", in 1999.
For her outstanding performance in the off-Broadway tour of "Wit", Judith received the Helen Hayes Award in Washington, DC, as well as the Elliot Norton Award in Boston.
While on One Life to Live (1968) Judith won two Emmys, two Soapy Awards and a Soap Opera Hall of Fame Award.
One of her performances on One Life to Live (1968) - "Karen Wolek on the Stand" - was so powerful and is remembered so vividly that, to this day, it is used as a model in acting classes throughout the nation. Additionally, it was recently honored as being one of TV Guide's "100 Most Memorable Moments on Television."
Attended St. Mary's Hall in Burlington, New Jersey.