George Edward Foreman was born to J.D. and Nancy Foreman on January 10, 1949, in the town of Marshall, Texas. An impoverished youth, Foreman often bullied younger children and didn't like getting up early for school. Foreman became a mugger and brawler on the hard streets of Houston's Fifth Ward by age 15.
Luckily, he was saved by the Lyndon B. Johnson Job Corps, a program developed to help disadvantaged kids by teaching them vocational job skills. Foreman traveled to California which is where he met Doc Broaddus, who was a Job Corps counselor and a boxing coach. It was Broaddus who encouraged Foreman to become a boxer.
Once he began to train at the gym, Foreman rapidly established an impressive amateur record. The culmination of his amateur boxing career came at the 1968 Olympics in Mexico City, where he won a gold medal in only his 25th amateur fight. In 1969, Foreman turned professional and within two years, Foreman was ranked the No. 1 challenger by the WBA and WBC. Foreman got his shot at the world heavyweight championship when he fought Joe Frazier on January 22, 1973, in Kingston, Jamaica. After becoming the champion, Foreman successfully defended his title twice.
He was ordained a minister in 1978 and began preaching in his hometown of Houston, Texas. In 1984, he founded the George Foreman Youth and Community Center, a non-denominational place for kids who need direction like he once did. In 1980, Foreman founded The Church of the Lord Jesus Christ.
Since the early 1990s, Foreman had discovered his talent for salesmanship, and by the end of the decade, he was making millions off of his appearances in infomercials marketing the George Foreman Lean Mean Grilling Machine. To date, more than 100 million of the units have sold worldwide.