Jillian Straus was born in 1973 and grew up in Los Angeles. She received a B.A. and an M.A. at the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University. She began a career in television production at ABC NEWS. She then spent eight years producing programs for The Oprah Winfrey Show, where she interviewed thousands of men and women about their lives and their relationships. She is a Fellow of the Woodhull Institute for Ethical Leadership, training young women in communications. She lives in New York City.