Faith Salie

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Faith Salie
Born (1971-04-14) April 14, 1971 (age 52)
EducationNorthwestern University
Harvard University (AB)
Magdalen College, Oxford (MPhil)
Years active1994–present
Nick Holly
(m. 2005; div. 2009)
John Semel
(m. 2011)
WebsiteOfficial website

Faith Coley Salie (born April 14, 1971) is an American journalist, writer, actress, comedian, television, radio, and podcast host and Rhodes scholar. She is a contributor to CBS Sunday Morning and a panelist on NPR’s Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me!. She hosted Science Goes To The Movies on PBS and CUNY TV. She is a storyteller for The Moth, with her story viewed over 4 million times. Her first book, Approval Junkie, "a collection of daring, funny essays chronicling the author's adventures during her lifelong quest for approval," was published by Crown in April 2016. Salie adapted it into a solo show which she performed Off-Broadway at the Minetta Lane Theater in New York City in 2021. The play premiered at the Alliance Theatre in Atlanta in 2019.

Early life[edit]

Salie was born in South Weymouth, Massachusetts,[1] to Robert Salie and Gail Coley Salie.[2] She grew up in Dunwoody, Georgia, with her two older brothers.[3] Salie was raised Roman Catholic.[4][5] Salie began dancing at age three and decided she wanted to be an actor after getting the lead in the fourth-grade class play. She began performing professional children's theatre at 13.[4] In college, she performed in plays and musicals with Matt Damon, Mo Rocca and China Forbes.[6]


Salie graduated in 1989 from North Springs High School in Fulton County, Georgia (now Sandy Springs, Georgia). She enrolled as an undergraduate at Northwestern University and transferred after one year to Harvard University. She graduated magna cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa from Harvard with a degree in History and Literature of Modern France and England. She won Harvard's prestigious literary award, the Bowdoin Prize,[7] as well as the Jonathan Levy Award[8] for best actor. Chosen for a Rhodes scholarship, she earned an M.Phil. in Modern English Literature from Magdalen College, Oxford.[4]

Professional career[edit]

Upon moving to Los Angeles from Oxford, Salie appeared in small roles on Sweet Valley High and Married... with Children before being cast on Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. She played the role of Sarina Douglas in two episodes, "Statistical Probabilities" (1997) and "Chrysalis" (1998). Salie, as Sarina Douglas, appears on a Deep Space Nine trading card.[9]

Salie starred in the 2004 Bravo improvisational situation comedy Significant Others, as well as other television sitcoms and dramas, including Sex and the City and Unhappily Ever After, in which she played goth girl Caitlin Blackpool for a season. As a stand-up comedian and "pop-culture pundit," she appeared on several VH-1 shows including Best Week Ever, I Love the...90s, and Undateable.

In 2006, Salie moved to Manhattan to host the Public Radio International show Fair Game from PRI with Faith Salie. It was a daily satirical news and entertainment show and podcast.[10] On Fair Game, Salie interviewed hundreds of newsmakers including Lorne Michaels, Jimmy Carter, Anthony Hopkins, Zach Galifianakis, Leonard Nimoy, and Chelsea Handler.[11] She was a regular contributor to an ethics column for O, The Oprah Magazine.[12] Salie has appeared as a guest on The Oprah Winfrey Show, The O'Reilly Factor, and Anderson.[13][14]

Since Fair Game, Salie has hosted many podcasts, including Wait Wait Naked and Ashamed[15] (about the 20th anniversary of Wait Wait…Don’t Tell Me!), Broadway Revival for Audible, Real Good for Stitcher, One Plus One for Wondery, and Authorized (about sex and romance in literature) for Audible. She has twice guest-hosted Wait Wait…Don’t Tell Me!

In February 2011, she hosted a Bravo special of Approval Matrix, a TV adaptation of New York magazine's feature by the same name.[16]

From 2008 to 2010, she hosted Sundance Channel’s coverage of the Sundance Film Festival,[17] where she interviewed actors and directors such as Jennifer Lawrence, Robert Redford, Ryan Gosling, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Chris Rock, Amy Poehler, Billy Bob Thornton, Joan Rivers, Michelle Williams, Dax Shepard, Elijah Wood, and Ashton Kutcher.[18]

Salie has been a contributor to CBS News Sunday Morning since 2009. She regularly does stories and commentaries on the show, on topics ranging from time travel to gender pronouns[19] to British vs. American English[20] to the journey of a pointe shoe to the Nutcracker stage.[21] She is a regular panelist on the NPR quiz show Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me!. She hosted the live, daily Sirius show News & Notes for the Entertainment Weekly channel in 2013.[12] In 2012, Salie hosted the National Book Awards.[22]

She has moderated events at venues such as the Paley Center for Media, Tribeca Film Festival, 92nd Street Y, the American Museum of Natural History, the New York Public Library, the World Science Festival and Comic-Con.[23]

Approval Junkie and other writing[edit]

In Salie’s book Approval Junkie: My Heartfelt (and Occasionally Inappropriate) Quest to Please Just About Everyone, and Ultimately Myself, she shares stories of the lengths she’s gone to for validation, such as winning her high school pageant, choosing the dress to wear to her divorce, and undergoing a kind of exorcism to please her ex-husband, whom she calls her “wasband.”[24] She adapted the book into a play with Amanda Watkins, who directed both the Alliance Theatre's Hertz Stage in Atlanta[25][26] and the Off-Broadway[27] runs.

Salie has also written for The New York Times,[28] Time,[29] USA Today,[30] and McSweeney’s.[31]

Personal life[edit]

Salie is married to John Semel. They were married on October 9, 2011, in Rome.[32] The couple has a son, born in 2012, and a daughter, born in 2014. Salie has been very public about her fertility treatments and challenges and speaks often about becoming a mother for the first time in her 40s.

She lives in Manhattan with her family.





Salie has won five Daytime Emmy Awards as a Contributing Commentator to CBS News Sunday Morning with the show's wins for Outstanding Morning Program in 2013,[33] 2015,[34] 2019[35] and 2021.[36]


  1. ^ "Fair Game from PRI with Faith Salie debuts". High Plains Public Radio. 2016. Retrieved February 28, 2016.
  2. ^ "Faith Salie and Nick Holly". The New York Times. June 5, 2005. Retrieved February 29, 2016.
  3. ^ "Gail Coley". 2012. Retrieved February 29, 2016.
  4. ^ a b c "National Public Radio: 'Panel Round 2'". NPR. December 10, 2016.
  5. ^ "How Rhodes Scholars Think: Faith Salie". September 17, 2007. Retrieved May 14, 2018.
  6. ^ Schaffer, Amanda (October 25, 1991). "No Sex Please, We're Athenian". The Harvard Crimson. Retrieved February 29, 2016.
  7. ^ "Bowdoin Prizes for Undergraduate Students". Retrieved January 25, 2022.
  8. ^ "Previous Recipients". Retrieved January 25, 2022.
  9. ^ "#181 - Sarina Douglas, Cataleptic Conundrum". The Trading Card Database. August 19, 2013. Retrieved February 29, 2016.
  10. ^ "Fair Game from PRI with Faith Salie Podcast". Learn Out Loud. Retrieved February 29, 2016.[permanent dead link]
  11. ^ Miller, Stuart (June 3, 2007). "Loosey-Goosey Voice on, Yeah, Public Radio". The New York Times. Retrieved February 29, 2016.
  12. ^ a b "Faith Salie". CBS Sunday Morning. August 27, 2013. Retrieved February 29, 2016.
  13. ^ "Life's Sticky Situations". The Oprah Winfrey Show. June 2, 2009. Retrieved February 29, 2016.
  14. ^ "Clips From Last Night". Piers Morgan Live. CNN. February 12, 2013. Retrieved February 29, 2016.
  15. ^ "🔊 Listen Now: Wait Wait Naked and Ashamed: Peter Sagal". NPR One. Retrieved January 25, 2022.
  16. ^ D'Addario, Daniel (February 2, 2011). "Approval Matrix Show Aims for Brilliant". The Observer. Retrieved September 2, 2015.
  17. ^ SUNDANCE '08 - BEST OF THE FEST - PART 1, retrieved January 25, 2022
  18. ^ "Blog: Faith Salie". Sundance TV. Retrieved February 29, 2016.
  19. ^ Faith Salie on preferred gender pronouns, retrieved January 25, 2022
  20. ^ Faith Salie on British vs. American English, retrieved January 25, 2022
  21. ^ "Nutcracker" ballerinas' most important accessory: Pointe shoes, retrieved January 25, 2022
  22. ^ "National Book Awards – 2012". National Book Foundation. Retrieved February 29, 2016.
  23. ^ Simmons, Bruce (July 25, 2009). "Caprica/BSG: The Plan – San Diego Comic-Con Panel". Screen Rant. Retrieved February 29, 2016.
  24. ^ "Approval Junkie: Adventures in Caring Too Much by Faith Salie". Barnes&Noble. Retrieved February 29, 2016.
  25. ^ Cristi, A. A. "Emmy-Winning Journalist & Comedian Faith Salie Opens One-Woman Show At Alliance Theatre". Retrieved January 25, 2022.
  26. ^ "Approval Junkie // Apr 5–Apr 28, 2019 // Hertz Stage // Alliance Theatre". Retrieved January 25, 2022.
  27. ^ Wild, Stephi. "Solea Pfeiffer, Elizabeth Marvel, Ato Blankson-Wood & More Added to Audible's Minetta Lane Theatre Line-Up". Retrieved January 25, 2022.
  28. ^ Salie, Faith (December 15, 2020). "Running From Gunshots at the Cathedral With My Son". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved January 25, 2022.
  29. ^ "How to Raise a Sweet Son in an Era of Angry Men". Time. Retrieved January 25, 2022.
  30. ^ Salie, Faith. "All I really need to know in life I learned from my kid's online kindergarten". USA TODAY. Retrieved January 25, 2022.
  31. ^ Salie, Faith. "Parents' Manhattan Kindergarten Application Essay". McSweeney's Internet Tendency. Retrieved January 25, 2022.
  32. ^ "Faith Salie, John Semel". The New York Times. October 13, 2011. Retrieved June 2, 2012.
  33. ^ "The National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Announces Winners for the 40th Annual Daytime Entertainment Emmy® Awards". National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. June 17, 2013. Archived from the original on October 30, 2016. Retrieved March 5, 2016.
  34. ^ "The National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Announces Winners for the 42nd Annual Daytime Entertainment Emmy® Awards". National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. April 26, 2015. Archived from the original on May 18, 2015. Retrieved March 5, 2016.
  35. ^ The National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Announces Winners of the 46th Annual Daytime Emmy Awards, 2019. Archived July 20, 2021, at the Wayback Machine
  36. ^ The National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Announces the Winners of the 48th Annual Daytime Emmy Awards, 2021.

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