Greta Van Susteren

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Greta Van Susteren
Greta Van Susteren in Manchester, NH.jpg
Van Susteren in Manchester, New Hampshire, January 8, 2008
Born (1954-06-11) June 11, 1954 (age 60)
Appleton, Wisconsin, U.S.
Education University of Wisconsin (B.A.)
Georgetown University (J.D.)
Occupation Host of On the Record
(Fox News Channel)
Years active 1991–present
Religion Scientologist
Spouse(s) John P. Coale
Bio on

Greta Van Susteren (born June 11, 1954) is an American commentator and television news anchor on the Fox News Channel, where she hosts On the Record w/ Greta Van Susteren. A former criminal defense and civil trial lawyer, she appeared as a legal analyst on CNN co-hosting Burden of Proof with Roger Cossack from 1994 to 2002, playing defense attorney to Cossack's prosecutor. As of 2014, she is listed as the 100th most powerful woman in the world by Forbes.[1]

Early life[edit]

Van Susteren (Dutch for "from Susteren") was born in Appleton, Wisconsin. Through the ancestry of her father, Urban Van Susteren, she of Dutch patrilinneal origins.[2][3] Her mother, born Margery (Conway), was a homemaker.[4][5] Van Susteren's father, Urban Van Susteren, was a longtime friend of future U.S. Senator Joseph McCarthy; McCarthy was best man at Greta Van Susteren's parents' wedding.[6] Urban Van Susteren, an elected judge, served as a campaign strategist for McCarthy, although Urban later broke with him.[7]

Van Susteren's sister, Lise, is a forensic psychiatrist in Bethesda, Maryland. In 2006, Lise was a candidate for the Democratic nomination for United States Senate.[8] Her brother, Dirk Van Susteren, was a journalist and long-time editor of the Vermont Sunday magazine, jointly published, until folding in 2008, by the Rutland Herald and the Barre Montpelier Times Argus.[9]

Van Susteren graduated from Xavier High School in Appleton in 1972 and the University of Wisconsin–Madison in 1976, where she studied geography and economics. She later earned a J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center in 1979 and prior to the start of her television work returned to Georgetown Law as an adjunct faculty member in addition to her full-time legal career. She was awarded an honorary doctor of laws degree from Stetson Law School.[10]


During coverage of the O. J. Simpson murder trial, she appeared regularly on CNN as a legal analyst.[11] This led to her stint as co-host of CNN's Burden of Proof and The Point.

In 2002, Van Susteren switched to the Fox News Channel after a highly publicized contract bidding war. Since then, she has hosted the current affairs show On the Record w/ Greta Van Susteren. In 2012 an orphanage and school opened in Haiti called The Greta Home and Academy, which Greta and her husband helped found alongside Samaritan's Purse.

In 2014, Van Susteren criticized a Republican candidate for the U.S. Senate in Texas, Dwayne Stovall, who was challenging two-term incumbent John Cornyn in the primary election on March 4, 2014, after Stovall ran an advertisement calling Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, Cornyn's superior in the Senate leadership, an ineffective "Beltway turtle". Until the controversial advertisement, the media had largely ignored Stovall's candidacy. Van Susteren called Stovall a "jerk" for running the ad: "You can be clever and funny in ads ... or you can be gratuitously insulting."[12] As of 2014, she is listed as the 100th most powerful woman in the world by Forbes.[1]

Personal life[edit]

Van Susteren married tort lawyer John P. Coale in 1988.[13] Coale, a self-described "ambulance chaser", became known as "Bhopal Coale" for his solicitation of clients among victims of the Bhopal disaster.[14] He has served as an adviser for Sarah Palin.[15]

Van Susteren and her husband are members of the Church of Scientology.[13][16]

Since 2006, she has been part owner of a restaurant, the Old Mill Inn, in Mattituck, New York, on the North Fork of Long Island.[17] According to local newspaper reports, she no longer has any financial interest in this restaurant.

In recognition of her Dutch heritage she was asked to assume the role of Honorary Chairperson of the Little Chute Windmill Committee. An authentic reproduction of a Dutch windmill will be built in Little Chute, Wisconsin where Van Susteren's family lived for some time.[18]


  1. ^ a b "The World's 100 Most Powerful Women". Forbes. Forbes. Retrieved 26 June 2014. 
  2. ^ For more info, see respective pages {van} and {Susteren} (a toponymic surname)
  3. ^ Dutch Americans, New Netherlands Institute
  4. ^ Smolowe, Jill (February 18, 2002). "Nipped, Tucked and Talking". People (magazine). Retrieved April 27, 2015. 
  5. ^ "Former Auburn Girl is Pictured with Sen. Joe McCarthy as Guest" (PDF). Citizen Advertiser (Auburn, New York). October 20, 1951. Retrieved April 27, 2015. 
  6. ^ Bulik, Mark (January 19, 2015). "1945: Joe McCarthy at a Love Fest". The New York Times. Retrieved January 20, 2015. 
  7. ^ "A Call to Action". Fox News. November 7, 2005. Retrieved July 4, 2010. 
  8. ^ Wagner, John (September 1, 2005). "Lise Van Susteren Joins Md. Senate Race". Washington Post. 
  9. ^ "Dirk Van Susteren". Maple Corner Media. Retrieved July 4, 2010. 
  10. ^ "Greta Van Susteren". Fox News. January 13, 2011. 
  11. ^ "Greta Van Susteren - Biography". Retrieved May 16, 2010. 
  12. ^ "Greta Slams Longshot GOP Candidate as 'Jerk' for McConnell Insult, February 14, 2014". Retrieved February 16, 2014. 
  13. ^ a b Jacoby, Mary (December 13, 1998). "High profile couple never pairs church and state". St. Petersburg Times. 
  14. ^ Goldberg, Jonah (October 26, 1998). "Regrettable Van Susteren". National Review. 
  15. ^ Stelter, Brian (May 25, 2009). "A Host Defends Her Brand". The New York Times. 
  16. ^ Dunn, Geoffrey (May 2011). The Lies of Sarah Palin. St. Martin's Press. p. 396. ISBN 0-312-60186-7. 
  17. ^ "Lobster Van Susteren, Anyone?". New York Magazine. July 24, 2006. Retrieved July 4, 2010. 
  18. ^ "GoDutch". GoDutch. April 7, 2007. Retrieved May 16, 2010. 

External links[edit]

[1] [2]

  1. ^ ""Responsibility of a Criminal Defense Attorney" by Greta Van Susteren". 
  2. ^ Catlett v. United States, 545 A.2d 1202 (D.C. 1988) "At 4:00 p.m., at a park on the southeast corner of Eighth and H Streets, Mrs. Fuller was forced into the alley where defendants beat her while she screamed for help and struggled to get free. Mrs. Fuller's clothing was removed and while two people held her legs Rouse inserted a pipe eleven inches into her rectum. The group departed, and Mrs. Fuller was abandoned in the garage. Her severely injured, partially clad body was discovered by a street vendor. A medical examination revealed that she died of multiple blunt force injuries, a combination of the beatings and the insertion of the pipe."