Geoffrey Owens on ‘Devastating’ Trader Joe’s Job Shaming: Now ‘More A Celebrity’ Than Ever


The career of Geoffrey Owens took an unexpected turn last week when an image of the former Cosby Show actor working at Trader Joe’s in Clifton, New Jersey went viral. The photo got broad pick up, most notably perhaps by, but a surprising result came out of the potentially embarrassing moment.

Job shaming outlets who posted the embarrassing image received broad criticism for the public shaming, and to hear Owens tell Good Morning America, he’s “more a celebrity now than (he’s) ever been.”

Sitting with host Robin Roberts, Owens displayed the charm and telegenic ease that led to his successful acting career and hit notes that were at once modest, self-aware and refreshingly apolitical in today’s time of a bitterly divided nation.

Proudly wearing both a Yale baseball cap (from where he earned his theatric training) AND his Trader Joe’s badge, Owens admitted that the shame he felt was intense, but fortunately, quickly turned to support.

“I was really devastated” he said, but added that “the period of devastation was so short because so shortly after that, the responses, my wife and I started to read these responses from like literally all over the world of support and so, fortunately, the shame part didn’t last very long.”

When asked if he has received any acting opportunities since this dust-up, Owens admitted that this hasn’t really changed his prospects at all, and even went so far as to admit that he didn’t want any favors. If he got more auditions from this attention, then great, but he didn’t want any acting gigs to fall in his lap just because of his working in Trader Joe’s.

Grace and wisdom on full display.

Watch the clip above courtesy of ABC.

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