Kari Lake is an American politician and former television news anchor best known for her bid for governor of Arizona in 2022.
Lake had an early interest in journalism and media. She graduated from the University of Iowa with a bachelor’s degree in communications and journalism.
She began working in local news in Iowa and Illinois in the early 1990s. In 1994, she relocated to Phoenix, Arizona, to take a job as the weekend weather anchor for KPNX TV.
She gained a reputation as an assertive interviewer through one-on-one interviews with political figures like Barack Obama and Donald Trump while working at KSAZ-TV (Fox 10 Phoenix).
But some of the most frequently asked questions about the Lake remain: is Kari Lake black? What is her ethnicity?
Kari Lake Ethnicity and Ancestry
Kari Lake’s ethnicity has been the subject of much speculation. Some in the MAGA audience believe she is white, while others point to her dark complexion and suggest that she may be multi-racial. However, there are no public records to confirm this.
Most available information indicates she is of entirely Western European descent—English, Irish, Scottish, and German roots.
Lake’s parents have European surnames common in America for centuries – Lake and McGuire (her mother’s maiden name). Her father’s side seems to originate from England, while her mom has Irish heritage.
In various interviews and speeches, Lake has referenced her family moving to America generations ago. She also cites experiencing occasional discrimination growing up in Iowa due to not being Catholic like most other families in her town.
But no direct non-European lineage has been found in searches of census records, birth indexes, marriage records, obituaries, and more for both Lake’s parents and grandparents.
Unless new evidence emerges, Kari Lake appears to be of entirely white European ancestry, as far back as records allow. Neither she nor anyone else has made credible claims of her having any non-Caucasian ethnicity.
Kari Lake’s Early Life and Background
Kari Lake was born in 1969 in Rock Island, Illinois, as the youngest of nine children of Larry and Sheila Lake. Her father worked as a teacher and football coach, while her mother was a nurse.
Lake grew up moving around Iowa and Illinois frequently due to her father’s coaching jobs. Being part of a large family likely contributed to Lake’s outgoing personality and ambition from a young age. She has described herself as an independent, willful child who would sometimes get sent to the hallway in grade school for talking too much.
Lake showed an early propensity for performance through school plays and talent shows. In high school, she began reporting on sports for the school paper.
After graduation, Lake studied journalism and communications at the University of Iowa. She got her first media job while still in college, working part-time as a production assistant at the local NBC affiliate KWQC TV6 in Davenport, Iowa.
Kari Lake–Marriages and Family
Kari Lake has two children with her current husband, Jeff Halperin. She married Halperin, a former news videographer, 1998 shortly after relocating to Phoenix. They have a daughter named Ruby and a son named Leo.
Lake was previously married in her early 20s to an electrical engineer named Tracy Finnegan from 1991 to around 1996. Very little is publicly known about this first marriage of hers.
Lake has said that family is essential to her, and she prioritizes spending time with them. She has also stated that her husband, Jeff, is her most trusted confidante and advisor.
By all accounts, Lake seems to have a stable, loving family life with Halperin and their two kids. However, her repeated dives into politics have introduced some upheaval and complications in recent years.
While something of a political chameleon over the years, Kari Lake today associates most closely with Trump-style conservative populism. She continues to generate headlines for her extreme stances and conspiracy-minded rhetoric.
As for Lake’s ancestral roots and ethnicity, genealogical research suggests an Anglo-European lineage as far back as traceable.