Taylor Hale, 27, is still on cloud nine two months after becoming the first Black woman to win Big Brother. The former beauty pageant titleholder was bullied and ostracized early in the season, but she defied the odds and won the $750,000 grand prize with a near-unanimous jury vote. She was also voted America’s Favorite Houseguest by the fans and took home an additional $50,000. Taylor told HollywoodLife EXCLUSIVELY that she’s been amazed by the fan response, specifically from other Black women who connected with her up-and-down experience in the house.
“Every Black woman that has come to me, especially ones that have been fans of the show for a long time, they’ll say something very specific in their personal lives where they saw their lived experience in the Big Brother house. They felt like what happened could never happen,” Taylor told us. “That was my whole reason for coming into the game, to prove we deserve to be here. The impact that can happen on one person is so much greater than what I ever expected.”
At the beginning of season 24, Taylor was mistreated by many of her houseguests, including the other Black contestants. “Going back and watching the conversations that were had about me has been really difficult,” the Michigan native admitted. “You can see that until it was clear people turned against me early on, I never tried to speak poorly about other Black people in the house. Knowing that I didn’t get the same treatment from early on hurts and I’m still processing it, but I can separate game from personal,” she added.
Taylor not only won $800,000, but she also found love with fellow houseguest Joseph Abdin. After forming a close relationship in the house, Taylor and the handsome lawyer confirmed that they’re dating on November 9, and she told us that she sees a “forever” with him!
“We want to make sure we’re taking the right steps and approaching it slowly,” Taylor said about her romance with Joseph, who is from Florida. “We have had the conversations to get through the gunk of the Big Brother house, and now we’re in a very solid, very happy relationship. I really love that guy.” She also confirmed that two are planning what’s next in their careers (she wants to work in entertainment news, while he’s starting an attorney practice) before they move in together. “Wherever we are, we’re really solid, and I don’t think distance is going to be a factor in tearing us apart,” Taylor said.
So, would Taylor ever do Big Brother again? Taylor said she’s onboard if CBS did a shortened, 3 to 4 week game with other winners or all-stars. “I would be interested in a condensed game. I think that would be really cool,” she said.
Taylor also name-dropped four-time player Janelle Pierzina for who she wants to team up with the most on a possible future season. “I just think she’s the coolest person ever,” Taylor said. “I haven’t gotten to meet her yet, so if my first time meeting her was in the Big Brother house that would be really cool.”