Bethenny Frankel (born November 4, 1970) is an American reality television personality, entrepreneur, and author. She was a contestant on the reality TV game show The Apprentice: Martha Stewart, in which she was the runner-up, in 2005. Frankel received wider notice after being cast on the Bravo reality television series The Real Housewives of New York City; she has starred in eight of its eleven seasons since it premiered in 2008. She received her own spin-off series Bethenny Ever After (2010–12), Bethenny & Fredrik (2018), and the talk show Bethenny (2013–14).
Outside of her work in reality television, Frankel is the founder of the Skinnygirl, a lifestyle brand, and BStrong, a disaster relief organization. She is also the author of four self-help books.
Frankel is the only child of Robert J. Frankel, a horse trainer, and Bernadette Birk, an interior designer. Her father was Jewish and her mother was a Roman Catholic of Welsh descent. Her father left her mother when Frankel was four years old. When she was five, her mother married horse trainer, John Parisella, who is of the Catholic faith. Frankel describes her childhood as difficult. Her mother, Frankel says, "was always drinking" and often argued violently with her stepfather.