|January 1, 1956
|American Actor, Unionist, Former Husband of Whoopi Goldberg
Whoopi Goldberg is one of the more famous celebrities in Hollywood. She has been married three times, and since the late 1990s, she remains single. Today, we will talk about one of her former husbands, Lyle Trachtenberg.
He is an American actor and IATSE union organizer. Many people recognize him as the former husband of the comedian, television personality, and American actress Whoopi Goldberg.
Trachtenberg is a native Californian. He had acting aspirations growing up, but his career was unsuccessful. Let’s take a look at his early life, educational background, and professional career.
Who Is His Former Wife?
Almost anyone in the United States recognizes Whoopi Goldberg. Born Caryn Elaine Johnson in November 1955, she is an American actor, comedian, author, and television personality. She is only one of 17 people to win the EGOT, which is a short name for the Emmy Award, Grammy Award, Academy Award, and Tony Award.
She was born in Manhattan, New York City. Her father Robert James Johnson Jr. was a Baptist clergyman, while her mother Emma Johnson was a nurse and teacher. Raised in a public housing project, Whoopi describes her mother as a stern, strong, and wise woman. Her mother raised her as a single parent with her brother Clyde. During her childhood, Whoopi attended a local Catholic school.
Here is a fun fact: her stage forename Whoopi was taken from a whoopee cushion. She says, “When you’re performing on stage, you never really have time to go into the bathroom and close the door. So if you get a little gassy, you’ve got to let it go. So people used to say to me, You’re like a whoopee cushion. And that’s where the name came from”.
In the 1970s, Goldberg moved to San Diego, California. There, she worked as a waitress, and a couple of odd jobs like a bank teller, mortuary cosmetologist, and bricklayer. She joined the avant-garde theater troupe the Blake Street Hawkeyes, where she gave acting classes. Fun fact: Courtney Love was one of her acting students.
The American actress began her career on stage in 1983 with a one-woman show, Spook Show. When the show transferred to Broadway, she used the title, Whoopi Goldberg, running from 1984 to 1985. Whoopi won a Grammy Award for Best Comedy Album for the recording of the show.
In 1985, she got her film breakthrough with the role of Celie, in Steven Spielberg’s period drama, The Color Purple.
Goldberg won an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress in 1990 for her role as an eccentric psychic in the fantasy film Ghost. In 1992, she starred in the comedy Sister Act, and then in the sequel in 1993. At the time, she became the highest-paid actress.
In television, her big role was portraying Guinan in the science fiction series, Star Trek The Next Generation from 1988 to 1993 and in Star Trek Picard in 2022.
Since 2007, Whoopi hosts the daytime talk show The View. For this show, she won a Daytime Emmy Award for Outstanding Talk Show Host.
During her career, Whoopi has hosted the Academy Award four times.
Now let’s talk about her former husband, Lyle Trachtenberg. Born in January 1956 in Los Angeles, California, he was interested in acting from a young age.
Following his high school graduation, Lyle enrolled at the University of California, Los Angeles. In 1980, he earned his degree. He then became an active member of the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees, a labor union that represents more than 100,000 technicians and artisans working in the entertainment industry.
By the mid-1990s, he became an influential organizer on the sets of various independent films. And over the years, he received credits for appearing in some movies, like the 1998 comedy film Beach Movie.
But while he was influential and loved, he also caused problems. For example, in 1995, he caused problems for indie filmmaker Allison Anders and her producers while filming Grace of My Heart.
She rehired several of the same non-union crew members that she had worked with before, and after filming began, Trachtenberg came and stationed himself outside by the catering truck and began listing the benefits of becoming a member of the IATSE.
While Lyle had aspirations to become an actor, he never found success as one. He did appear as himself in the action-horror From Dusk Till Dawn.
He continues being an active member of the IATSE and often takes part in demonstrations.
Marriage To Whoopi
Whoopi Goldberg has been married three times. Her first marriage was to drug counselor Alvin Martin from 1973 to 1978. Together, they have a daughter, Alexandra Martin, another American actress and film producer. Their daughter Alexandra won the Miss Golden Globe Award at the 1994 Golden Globes.
From 1986 to 1988, Whoopi was married to David Claessen, yet, that marriage didn’t produce any children.
And then came the marriage to union organizer Lyle Trachtenberg. Whoopi and Lyle got married in October 1994, but that marriage was short-lived. The next year, in 1995, they already got a divorce. During that short time, Lyle was a stepfather to her daughter Alexandra Martin.
Following the divorce, he got married to Canadian actress Adrianna Belan. The couple has two daughters together, Gabriella Trachtenberg and Natasha Trachtenberg.
Is He Related To Michelle Trachtenberg?
You might read Lyle’s surname and think, hey, he might be related to Michelle Trachtenberg. The two share a surname, but nothing more.
There is no info on whether they are cousins, or have any other relationship between them. Michelle Trachtenberg is an American actress and model who began her career at the age of three. Many people recognize her as Georgina in the Gossip Girl television series.
Is He On Social Media?
No, Lyle Trachtenberg is not active on social media. You cannot find a profile by his name on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter.
On the other hand, his former wife Whoopi is quite active on social media. She has an Instagram and Twitter profile. On the former, she has more than 1.3 million followers.
Lyle has worked nearly his entire life as an IATSE union organizer. How much has he earned during that period?
Well, according to some reports, he has a net worth of more than $1 million. He also tried acting but didn’t find success in it.
On the other hand, his former wife Whoopi has a whooping net worth. According to reports, she has a net worth of more than $60 million. But we have to remember, she is one of the more successful American actresses.