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Paula Deen Press Kit (2015)

Updated on September 7, 2015



Paula Deen’s path to becoming a well-known chef began in 1982 when she divorced her husband and was left with $200 and two teenage sons in Savannah, Georgia. It was in Savannah that Deen started her very first business, The Bag Lady; The Bag Lady was a small catering business that had Deen cooking and creating a variety of fresh bag lunches that she would sell to downtown businesses and doctors' offices. As Deen became known, she was offered a position by a Best Western Hotel in Savannah as a chef, which she accepted. For five years, Deen continued to run The Bag Lady while working as a chef at the Best Western Hotel until she had the funds to open her own restaurant in southern Savannah. The Lady and Sons became Deen’s first restaurant; there, Deen served breakfast, lunch, and dinner in a small space that could seat a maximum of 42 people In 1995 Deen relocated The Lady and Sons to downtown Savannah, where The Lady and Sons has been open ever since.


Paula Deen’s brand and image first began to develop as she expanded from cooking into writing. In 1997, Deen published her first two cookbooks that she titled The Lady & Sons Savannah Country Cooking and The Lady & Sons Savannah Country Cooking 2. In 1998, Deen made her first appearance on television when she promoted her The Lady & Sons Savannah Country Cooking book on QVC television; soon after Deen found herself as a guest on the Good Morning America program. Two years after her cookbooks published, USA Today awarded The Lady & Sons the "International Meal of the Year".

Rise to Television

Paula Deen’s entrance to Food Network began with her as a guest of Gordon Elliott on a few of his Doorknock Dinners episodes. From there she appeared on eight episodes of Ready, Set, Cook where she versed Ludovic Lefebvre and Kevin Belton. On invitation from Foord Network Deen shot a pilot episode of Afternoon Tea in 2001. Her guest appearances impressed Food Network who offered Deen her own show, Paula's Home Cooking. Paula's Home Cooking premiered in November 2002. In 2006 Food Network awarded Deen an additional show which she titled Paula's Party; in 2008 Deen’s third television show Paula's Best Dishes premiered.

Charitable Endeavors

Paula Deen has supported three main charitable foundations since her rise to fame: Blessings in a Backpack, Habitat for Humanity, and Robert F Kennedy Memorial charity. In 2012 Deen established her own charity which she named after her first business. The Bag Lady Foundation’s mission is to improve the well-being, health, and independence of families through nourishment and nurturing. Currently Deen donates an annual percentage of the net proceeds from Paula Deen Foods to The Bag Lady Foundation.

Fact Sheet


Birth name: Paula Ann Hiers

Born: January 19, 1947

Home town: Albany, Georgia

Currently resides in: Savannah, Georgia


Paula Deen & Friends

Paula Deen's Southern Cooking Bible

Paula Deen's Savannah Style

Paula Deen: It Ain't All About the Cookin'

Paula Deen's Cookbook for the Lunch-Box Set

Paula Deen's The Deen Family Cookbook

Paula Deen's My First Cookbook

Christmas with Paula Deen

Paula Deen Celebrates!

The Lady & Sons Just Desserts

Restaurants & Stores

The Lady and Sons

Paula Deen's Family Kitchen

Paula Deen Retail Store

Television Appearances

Doorknock Dinners

Ready, Set, Cook

Paula's Best Dishes

Paula's Home Cooking

Paula's Party

Not My Mama's Meals

Iron Chef America


Emmie Outstanding Lifestyle Host for Paula's Home Cooking

Gracie Outstanding Host for Paula's Home Cooking



Social Media:,,,,



Paula Deen’s rise to fame began when she became divorced in 1982; she left her marriage with two sons and $200. Using her $200 and her cooking skills, Deen created her first business, The Bag Lady, to help support herself and her two sons. Twenty years later, Deen became a Food Network star with her very own show, “Paula's Home Cooking”.

Since her first Food Network show, Deen has become a household name known for genuine southern cooking filled with love. Deen’s brand has expanded past her cooking shows to include cookware, kitchenware, kitchen linens, baking mixes, seasonings, sauces, cookbooks, pet products, sun glasses, reading glasses, and lifestyle shows. Currently, Deen streams her own shows from her at-home kitchen studio, which she then shares through her website called Paula Deen Network.
Even with all of her success, Deen has remained true to who she is. Her own experiences after her divorce and her financial struggles inspired Deen to create her own charity, The Bag Lady, to help give back to people who are in need. Throughout her rise to fame one thing has remained consistent…
It is still all about the southern cooking.

Press Release

Contact: Jaret Keller (for Public Relations Inquiries)

Office: 1 (212) 988-7701



Paula Deen Apologizes to Family, Fans, Friends, Partners, and Team

SAVANNAAH, GA. (June 23, 2013) – On June 22, Savannah Morning News released Paula Deen’s deposition relative to the Lisa Jackson lawsuit against Deen. Deen would like to offer her apologies to her family, fans, friends, partners, and to her team for the mistakes that she has made. Deen deeply regrets the way that her actions negatively affected those who care for and support her.

I want to apologize to everybody for the wrong that I’ve done. I want to learn and grow from this. Inappropriate, hurtful language is totally, totally unacceptable. I’ve made plenty of mistakes along the way, but I beg you, my children, my team, my fans, my partners, I beg for your forgiveness. Please forgive me for the mistakes that I’ve made

— Paula Deen

On her mistake, Deen addresses the public to ask for forgiveness for words that she would take back if she could.

If there’s anyone out there who has never said something that they wish they could take back, if you’re out there, please pick up that stone and throw it so hard at my head that it kills me, please I want to meet you

— Paula Deen


Author Paula Deen Biography. (n.d.). Retrieved July 29, 2015, from [Backgrounder]

Awards: Paula Deen. (n.d.). Retrieved August 2, 2015, from [Fact Sheet]

Dine, Shop, and Stay with Us. (n.d.). Retrieved August 2, 2015, from [Fact Sheet]

Facebook Paula Deen. (n.d.). [Digital Image]Retrieved July 31, 2015, from [Fact Sheet Photo]

Food Chef Paula Deen Losses Stone. (n.d.). [Digital Image].Retrieved August 23, 2015, from [Bio Photo]

Home Cooking With Paula Deen - (n.d.). Retrieved August 15, 2015, from [Bio]

Moore, B. (n.d.). Paula Deen Biography - Celebrity Chef Bio. Retrieved July 29, 2015, from [Backgrounder]

Nguyen, T. (2013, June 21). Paula Deen’s Statement On Racism Scandal. Retrieved July 25,
2015, from
statement/ [Press Release]

Paula Deen Bio: Food Network. (n.d.). Retrieved July 30, 2015, from

Paula Deen Cooks Up Laughs For Clay And Dale. (2011, February 15). [Digital Image].
Retrieved July 29, 2015, from dale/ [Cover Sheet Photo]

Paula Deen Launches “The Bag Lady Foundation” to Support Women and Families in Need. (2013, May 22). Retrieved August 1, 2015, from“The-Bag-Lady-Foundation”#.Vbzcn_lViko [Backgrounder]

Rao, V. (2013, June 26). Paula Deen: I would not have fired me. Retrieved August 23, 2015, from [Press Release]

Ready... Set.... Cook! Episodes. (n.d.). Retrieved July 30, 2015, from

Simon & Schuster: Paula Deen. (n.d.). Retrieved August 2, 2015, from [Fact Sheet]

The Bag Lady Foundation. (2013, July 10). [Digital Image].

Retrieved July 31, 2015, from [Backgrounder Photo]

The Bag Lady Foundation. (n.d.). Retrieved August 1, 2015, from [Backgrounder]

The Lady and Sons Paula Deen Ventures. (n.d.). [Digital Image].
Retrieved July 30, 2015, from [Backgrounder Photo]


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