Jamie Oliver

Born: May 27, 1975

Occupation: TV Chef & Restaurant Owner

Challenges overcome: Dyslexia

Successes, Achievements & Awards:

Jamie Oliver was born in Clavering Essex on 27 May 1975.

Jamie Oliver is a chef who has had huge success all over the world with his TV shows, cookbooks and campaigning for better food and food education. He first began in 1999 with his first show, ‘The Naked Chef’ on BBC. Since then he’s had a large number of shows based in the UK and abroad, broadcast on Channel 4 in the UK and ABC in America.

In 2005, Jamie began a campaign to have healthier meals in schools, and was so successful the government pledged to address the issue. Because of the campaign, Jamie was announced as the ‘Most Inspiring Political Figure of 2005’ by a Channel 4 viewer’s poll.

He began his first high street restaurant venture in 2008, with Jamie’s Italian. Since then there are now 35 restaurants in the venture, and franchises across the globe including Hong Kong, Russia and Australia. Jamie has won a large number of awards in his career, including becoming an MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours in 2003, and winning the TED Prize in 2010. He also won an Emmy for Best Reality Series for his American show ‘Jamie’s Food Revolution’ in 2010 and was inducted into the Culinary Hall of Fame in 2013. He has been married to his wife, Juliette ‘Jools’ Oliver, since 2000 and has four children, Poppy, Daisy, Petal and Buddy with her.

Challenges Overcome

Jamie has dyslexia and struggled at school because of it. He has said he was labelled as special needs at school because he had to be taken out of class for extra help in English lessons and was bullied by other students because of this. He finished reading his first novel, Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins, at the age of 38. “I’m dyslexic and until recently I’d never got through a book.
“But I read Catching Fire. I loved disappearing into a story.”

Disability Definitions


Dyslexia, also known as alexia or developmental reading disorder, is characterised by difficulties when learning to read and with differing language comprehension despite normal or above-average intelligence. This includes difficulty with phonological awareness, phonological decoding, processing speed, orthographic coding, auditory short-term memory, language skills and verbal comprehension, or rapid naming of objects. Dyslexia only affects some skills and abilities and is not linked to a person’s general level of intelligence.


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