Kelly Ripa Recalls Being Denied An Office And Worked From The ‘Janitor’s Closet’

Kelly Ripa opened up about her early years with “Live.” How she was denied paid vacation time, and maternity, to crown it all, even after three years of working with “Live,” Kelly had no office of her own.

Kelly who is currently the oldest co-host of “Live” joined the show in 2001. She was a replacement for Kathie Lee Gifford, and worked alongside Regis Philbin who later left the show in 2011.

Speaking Variety for her “Power of Women 2023” cover story which was published on Tuesday, March 28, the actress shared how she finally got herself an office despite all odds.

Kelly Ripa — Kelly Forcefully Got Herself An Office

According to the 52-year-old, she wasn’t given any office of her own even after three years of working with them. She was denied severally whenever she requests for an office.

The most shocking part of it is that there were vacant offices in the company but the show’s executives refused to release one to her. “I was told that I couldn’t have an office. It didn’t make a whole lot of sense, especially because there were empty offices that I could have easily occupied.”

In her fourth year, she was given a space in the most bizarre place. “It was after my fourth year that they finally cleaned out the closet and put a desk in there for me, and so I was working in the janitor’s closet with a desk so that I could have a place to put things.”

Kelly told the outlet that even after a decade with the show, they had no plans of giving her an office. After Regis left the show, she was told his office is being kept for her next co-host Michael Strahan.

“They said, ‘Oh, no, we’re saving that.’ And I said, ‘Saving it for what?’ And they go, ‘Well, for when the new guy comes.’ And I looked at them, and I said, ‘I am the new guy. I just moved my things. I forced my way into the office because I couldn’t understand how I would still be in the janitor’s closet and somebody new would come in and get the office.”

She continued, “Initially, I thought this is just what happens, and they don’t have to fill me in because I’ve only been here 10 years. I’m still the new girl. But then, when I was the more senior on-air person, it was like watching the same movie all over again.”

Kelly went on to add, “All of those offices that were not available to me were suddenly made available, with walls knocked down to make them twice as big, It was fascinating for me to watch — the need to make the new guy comfortable and respected, but I couldn’t use those offices. I had to use the broom closet.”

Kelly Ripa — Kelly Finally Got The Respect She Deserves

The maltreatment from the executives stretched to not giving Kelly her own private bathroom. She shared that she had to stand in the queue with the audience and it was a tough time for her especially when she was pregnant.

“Picture this … we have a studio audience — like 250 people! — and I have to queue up,” said Kelly while explaining how it was “extraordinarily exhausting to have to wait in line.”

She also added, “I have to host the show and I’m still waiting in line to use the bathroom. It just seemed, you know, a very needlessly difficult situation.” Kelly vowed that if she had known how difficult things would be for her on the show, she would have rejected the job.

“I just think my ignorance in that situation wound up being my blessing and my superpower. I did not have an easy time,”

Kelly told Variety that her salary was initially nothing to write home about but all that changed after her “Live!” contract was about to end and she was determined to leave the show and never look back.

“I don’t think they wanted to pay me. I think they had to pay me,” she continued, “I was trying to walk out the door and close it behind me. And I think they really figured out rapidly that they had screwed up in a major way, and it was not a good look. I think that was really the impetus behind paying me fairly. They had no choice.”

Be sure to catch up on everything happening with Kelly Ripa right now. Come back here often for all the Kelly Ripa’s spoilers, news, and updates.

Editorial credit: Ron Adar /

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