A down-home entrant in America's new wave of celebrity chefs, Paula Deen parlayed her definitive Southern charm and irrepressible personality into a multimedia epicurean franchise joining the caliber of überfoodies Emeril Lagasse and Rachael Ray. A once-abandoned single mother who conquered crippling agoraphobia through her love of cooking, Deen leveraged her rich Southern cooking into a successful, regionally renowned restaurant. A self-admitted "cook" versus trained chef, the CEO of Paula Deen Enterprises expanded this renown into a multimedia empire, including cookbooks, a magazine, numerous shows on the Food Network cable channel and a syndicated daytime talk show for Warner Bros. What set Deen apart from all other culinary giants remained her homespun charm and her refusal to make heart-healthy any of her Southern friend delicacies, which in turn, delighted fans who appreciated her unorthodox, down-to-earth style of cooking. Despite her growing popularity, not everyone was as admiring of Deen's high-fat approach to dining, in particular fellow celebrity chef Anthony Bourdain who once called Deen "the worst, most dangerous person to America." Not surprisingly, when during a 2012 interview Deen admitted that she had been diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes some three years prior, the Grand Dame of Southern cooking found public sympathy to be in short supply. A home-spun heroine to some and an unrepentant hypocrite to others, Deen continued to whet the appetites of comfort food fans across the nation until the fallout from a lawsuit brought against Deen and her younger brother jeopardized her entire career in the summer of 2013.