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354. Hugh Hefner: The Greatest Playboy
Hugh Hefner is one of the most controversial
figures in the United States. He is the
, and president of Playboy magazine, which is a
's adult magazine. From humble beginnings in the 1950s,
has grown his pornographic industry into the multi-million-dollar
, which includes his magazine publication, TV, and Internet
Born in Chicago, Illinois in 1926, Hefner led
average life growing up in the big city.
graduated from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign,
majored in psychology. After serving two years in
United States Military, he began working as a
editor at Esquire magazine in the early 50s.
quit his job to go out on his
. He was determined to start a magazine that
similar to Esquire, a men's magazine. His first "
" was published from his home in 1953, without
publication date. He did this because he was
if there would be a second edition.
purchased a nude picture of the famous actress,
Monroe, and used that image as the centerfold
his first issue. The 50,000 copies sold quickly,
Hefner became an instant success story. During the
, Hefner and Playboy were at the top of
popularity. His circulation was now in the millions,
Hefner ventured into new areas for his company.
produced films, started modeling agencies, built hotels and
, and hosted two television series. His publication was
without controversy, though.
In 1963, he was arrested
stood trial for publishing a photo of American
, Jayne Mansfield. The charges were eventually dropped, but
was clear that there would be challenges to
publication because of its content. Hefner permanently moved
headquarters to Los Angeles in 1975 so that
could be closer to the film industry. He
been married three times, and has four children.