Donald Trump crowns Trace Adkins winner of 'All-Star Celebrity Apprentice'by jmaloni
"All-Star Celebrity Apprentice" raises more than $3,000,000 for charity this season
Host and executive producer Donald Trump named multi-platinum country star Trace Adkins as the winner of the first-ever "All-Star Celebrity Apprentice" in Sunday's live season finale, concluding a dramatic and closely watched sixth season. Adkins beat Las Vegas superstar Penn Jillette in the finale held at New York University's Skirball Center for the Performing Arts in New York City.
In addition to the celebrated boardroom showdown, the finale revealed that Adkins' designated charity would receive the $250,000 prize, which will be added to the show's total charity earnings for the season of $3,332,000. Adkins raised a total of $1,554,072 for American Red Cross, while Jillette raised a total of $598,655 for Opportunity Village.
Jillette also received $100,000 from Walgreens for creating the top-selling signature celebrity flavor of Good & DeLish premium ice cream, bringing his charity total to $698,655. The products, Adkins' "Maple Macadamia Mash-Up" and Jillette's "Vanilla & Chocolate Magic Swirtle," were sold in Walgreens and Duane Reade stores nationwide last week.
In addition, Trump awarded fan-favorite contestant Lil Jon $100,000 for his chosen charity, American Diabetes Association.
"We had the all-star players this season and Trace clearly demonstrated that he has what it takes to be a winner," Trump said. "As our new celebrity apprentice, he proved to have the winning strategy throughout the intense schedule and tough boardrooms. He was also able to win $1,554,072 for his charity, American Red Cross. I congratulate him on his win - Trace is a star all the way and now joins Piers Morgan, Joan Rivers, Bret Michaels, John Rich and Arsenio Hall as winners of the toughest reality show on television today. I'd also like to salute Penn, who was also a very impressive player."
"Sometimes in life we begin a task wondering if it's the right thing to do," Adkins said. "Tonight, I can proudly say that competing on the show a second time ended up being a very good thing. I was honored to play for the American Red Cross - they came to my family's aid when we needed them - and I am a man who repays my debts. They deserve this bonus check for $250,000 from Mr. Trump and I also must thank the Nashville community and all my friends who contributed to the fundraising efforts all season long. At any hour of the day, there is an American Red Cross volunteer selflessly helping others and they deserve our support. I'd also like to congratulate Opportunity Village for finding the ultimate supporter in Penn Jillette. He is a man of integrity and compassion who I am glad to call my friend."
In the episode before the finale, Trump shocked the final four contestants by calling them back to the boardroom just minutes after the previous task ended. After asking all four contestants to make their case, he chose Adkins and Jillette as the finalists. Trump then issued the last, and most challenging task - to create a signature Good & DeLish premium ice cream flavor to be sold in Walgreens and Duane Reade stores, then design packaging, produce a promotional video and sell tickets to an ice cream social event. Six celebrity contestants returned to help them and the two finalists had to work together to bring star power and entertainment to a shared event space.
In addition to Walgreens, this season's sponsors included Australian Gold, Farouk Hair Systems' Chi and BioSilk products, Foxwoods Resorts, Kraft, LG Electronics, and The South African Tourism Board.
When the season began on March 3, the women included "Taxi" star and best-selling author Marilu Henner; entertainment icon La Toya Jackson; television/radio personality and actress Claudia Jordan; "The Apprentice" original all-star Omarosa; actress, host and author Lisa Rinna, and Playmate of the Year Brande Roderick.
The men included multi-platinum country star Adkins; actor, author and entrepreneur Stephen Baldwin; Academy Award-nominated actor Gary Busey; magician, master illusionist and Vegas superstar Jillette; DJ artist, rap star and entrepreneur Lil Jon; Poison frontman Bret Michaels; NBA Hall-of-Famer Dennis Rodman, and rock star and Twisted Sister frontman Dee Snider.
This season, Trump's advisers included Ivanka Trump, Donald Trump Jr. and Eric Trump, as well as former "Celebrity Apprentice" winners Piers Morgan, Joan Rivers, John Rich and Arsenio Hall.
"All-Star Celebrity Apprentice" is produced by Mark Burnett in association with Trump Productions.