It’s easy to assume that America’s millionaires live in New York or Silicon Valley, and made their millions in banking or technology, but CNBC’s Blue Collar Millionaires introduces viewers to hard-working men and women whose ingenuity and determination has made them millions. SallyAnn Salsano, the creator and executive producer of the series, explains the series’ appeal. “Blue Collar Millionaires resonates with the viewers because it gives everybody hope that with hard work and determination, you can live the American dream as well. I think that there’s a stereotype today that in order to make money you have to be a white-collar, highly educated person and this show proves that is absolutely not the case.”
In this week’s episode, we get to know a musician turned chimney sweep who’s cleaning up big-time; a Hawaiian couple whose high-end ukuleles bought them their own island paradise; and a former janitor who went from shining floors to shipping petroleum — and made millions. Salsano teases, “The underlying theme for this episode is an unrelenting passion to chase your dreams and make them become a reality, and one of them has some pretty awesome bling that comes in the form of their very own sports team.” I think I could withstand just about anything if it meant I could own a piece of my beloved Chicago Cubs!
Check Out this Week’s Episode
Music superstar Tim McGraw narrates the series — himself a testament to the notion that hard work and grit can lead to incredible success. The series, now in its second season, has introduced many millionaires who have parlayed their passion into life in the penthouse, and Saldano names a personal favorite, revealing, “If I had to come back as one of them in another life, Mickey Redwine might be my guy. [Viewers met Redwine, a telecom magnate, earlier in Season 2] The dude made great money laying fiber optic cable and now he’s either kicking ass-fighting crime as a Texas police officer or hanging out on his private resort. A girl can always dream!”
While we assume that big bankrolls start in the halls of corporate America, Salsano thrives on shining a light on the people who’ve turned hard work into cold, hard cash. “A lot of success to be had in work that requires you to get your hands dirty,” she says. “I sometimes think people forget that America was built on this principal. It’s all about hard work and taking advantage of the opportunities that arise when one least expects it.
It’s a wonder that Salsano hasn’t been featured in her own show; the Long-Island native and mega producer is the mind behind TV successes including MTV’s Jersey Shore, CMT’s Party Down South, VH1’s new smash, Martha & Snoop’s Potluck Dinner Party and the syndicated talk show, The Real.
“The joke around the office now is that we’re in the wrong business and I gotta tell you, based on the millionaires from season 2, I tend to agree!,” laughs Salsano. “I can promise you one thing. If this television thing doesn’t work out, I’m going to be getting my hands dirty in a city near you!”
Blue Collar Millionaires > CNBC > Wednesdays at 10pm ET/PT