Happy birthday, Chris Cuomo! In honor of the CNN star's 50th birthday on Aug. 9, 2020, Wonderwall.com is rounding up some fun facts about the "Cuomo Prime Time" host that you might not know (but should!). Keep reading to learn more about TV's hunkiest journalist…
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1. He's a licensed attorney
That's right, before Chris Cuomo pursued journalism, he had a successful career as a Wall Street lawyer. After graduating from Yale, he earned a law degree from Fordham University in New York City in 1995. During that time, Chris was considered one of New York's most eligible bachelors and even made People magazine's 50 Most Beautiful People list in 1997, but he found the work unsatisfying. Chris left for a temporary CNBC gig in 1997 before moving on to FOX and ABC News.
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2. He's been married for almost two decades
Chris Cuomo married magazine editor Cristina Greeven on Nov. 24, 2001. The New York Daily News reported that the Catholic ceremony took place at the Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary Catholic Church in Southampton on New York's Long Island, with Cristina prompting "some hand-wringing" by showing up more than a half hour late. She carried a bouquet of red roses and wore a lacy Oscar de la Renta gown.
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3. He's 100% Italian
Chris Cuomo is is a second-generation American, but his family has roots in Italy. The paternal half of his family hails from the Nocera Superiore, Tramonti and Cava de' Tirreni area of Salerno southeast of Naples, while the maternal half comes from Merì and San Pier Niceto in Messina in Sicily. Both of his grandmothers were born in Italy, but both of his grandfathers were born in the United States, taken to Italy as youngsters and returned to America as adults.
4. He's a workout fanatic
Chris Cuomo's Instagram is full of videos set in the gym, but the fitness buff told The New York Times in 2018 that he does not believe in bodybuilding. He consistently finds time to hit the gym around his insane schedule, breaking a sweat with CrossFit or fight training. Outside of staying in shape, Chris uses motivational books and podcasts to help him get through the daily grind.
5. His father served as governor of New York for three terms
Mario Matthew Cuomo was a Democratic politician and served as the 52nd Governor of New York from 1983 to 1994, Lieutenant Governor of New York from 1979 to 1982 and Secretary of State of New York from 1975 to 1978. He was widely considered a potential front-runner for the Democratic nomination for president in both 1988 and 1992 but he declined to seek the nomination in both instances. He passed away in 2015 at 82.
6. His brother, current New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, practically raised him
Chris Cuomo grew up in Queens as the youngest of five children of Matilda and Mario Cuomo. Chris was 12 when his father was elected governor of New York. With his workaholic dad often absent, Chris told New York Magazine in 2010 that he was "basically raised" by big brother Andrew Cuomo, who's 13 years his senior and currently the governor of New York. When Chris left for Yale in 1988, his big brother was the one to drop him off at school.
7. His sister is an award-winning film producer
It seems that every member of the Cuomo clan is a success story. Chris's older sister, Maria Cuomo Cole, is a producer of social impact films and has her own production company, Cuomo Cole Productions. She's responsible for documentaries like 2015's "The Hunting Ground" and 2012's "The Invisible War," which won her two Emmy Awards. She's been married to fashion designer Kenneth Cole since 1987.
8. He was hit by an IED in Iraq
Chris Cuomo went to Iraq as a correspondent for ABC News in 2007. While there, he accompanied the U.S. Army's 410th Military Police Company on a routine patrol while they were training Iraqi forces. While investigating reports of a burning police vehicle in Baghdad, his convoy was hit by a roadside bomb. While the Army vehicles were disabled by the explosions, injuries were limited to one service member. "I was blown up and lived thanks to our amazing fighting men and women," he recounted to CNN.
9. He can't grow a lot of hair
Chris Cuomo has claimed he's unable to grow chest hair or facial hair. "Despite being 100% Italian, I am almost devoid of chest hair and can't grow a beard," he told CNN in 2014. Not having to worry about shaving each day must save time in the anchor's hectic schedule.
10. He first became a famous face at ABC News
Chris Cuomo was first hired by ABC as a correspondent for "20/20," which was hoping to attract a younger audience to the flagship newsmagazine. However, the journalist really gained popularity when he became a news anchor on "Good Morning America" in 2006. He took on investigative projects and premiered a feature called "Cuomo's AmeriCANs," which put the spotlight on Americans making a difference in their communities. In 2009, he was promoted to a more prominent role as a co-anchor on "20/20." He moved to CNN in 2013.
11. He saved a drowning man in the Hamptons
During a weekend fishing trip at his family's Hamptons vacation home in 2015, Chris Cuomo and his wife spotted a man drowning in open water. The Cuomos initially attempted to throw the man a life preserver but saw that he was too physically spent from fighting a strong current. Chris then jumped in the water and swam to the man, managing to grab him and drag him back to shore. Chris offered this advice on CNN the following week: "There's a lesson in this: Don't jump into fast-moving water."
12. His wife, Christina, is the founder of Purist, a wellness magazine
In a 2018 interview with The New York Times, Chris Cuomo shared that his wife runs her business from home. That business is Purist, a wellness magazine with both print and digital editions that she launched in 2017. Throughout the coronavirus pandemic, she's been publishing content full of "quarantine cuisine," coping techniques and ways to keep your spirits up while self-isolating at home with or without family. She knew a lot about the virus first hand: Both Christina and Chris battled COVID-19 in 2020, as did their teenage son, Mario.
13. He loves to fish
Anyone who follows Chris on social media is aware of his favorite recreational hobby: fishing. He consistently posts his catches with friends and family, sending tongues wagging with the oft-shirtless pics. While appearing on Chris's CNN show in 2020, his brother, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, revealed the one thing he can't wait to do when the coronavirus pandemic ends: "I want to be able to go fishing with you and throw my cell phone in the ocean and not worry about it…"
14. He calls his son "the person who changed my life"
Chris Cuomo and wife Cristina have three children: Bella, 17, Mario, 14, and Carolina, 11, who Chris refers to as his "jewels." In a segment for CNN's "The Person Who Changed My Life," the journalist described the "fear" he had in his relationship with his own father and how his son helped change his "intense and insistent" attitude to make him a more successful parent.
15. He totaled his 1969 Firebird convertible in a drag race
Chris Cuomo crashed his 1969 Pontiac Firebird after a Hamptons party thrown by his wife in 2016, according to a Page Six report. He reportedly entered an illegal drag race over the Memorial Day weekend and lost control of the vehicle during the event. Chris allegedly hit a parked SUV belonging to one of his friends. A pal was quick to respond to the allegations and say that he was only playing around.
16. His birth was an accident
Chris Cuomo's oldest sibling is 16 years his senior, while his youngest sibling is still six years older than him. He told CNN in 2014 that his birth was a mistake, saying, "I wore my sister's hand me downs up through middle school. Baby blue Levi cords taught me how to fight early and often."