After several months of scrambling to fill Chris Harrison’s role with a random assortment of hosts, The Bachelor finally selected a new face to helm the franchise in September 2021: former Bachelor Jesse Palmer. Palmer led Season 5 of The Bachelor, which aired in 2004. Since then, he’s built a career as a sports commentator and television personality, making the Bachelor hosting gig a natural progression.
"Falling in love is one of life's greatest gifts, and I am humbled by the opportunity to return to the show as host this season to offer the newest Bachelor advice gained from firsthand experience and I am grateful to play a small part in his journey," Palmer said in a statement after he was announced as host.
So far, Palmer is only confirmed to host Clayton Echard’s season of The Bachelor. Insiders claim the plan is for Palmer to continue serving as the host for the entire franchise following his first Bachelor season, but nothing has been officially decided yet. Here’s what to know about him ahead of his return to the mansion.
Jesse Palmer’s Job Before The Bachelor
When Palmer was selected as the Bachelor in 2004, he was towards the end of what would be a five-year stint as a quarterback for the New York Giants. “The [Bachelor] put me in front of a completely different audience and demographic,” he told Resident Magazine in March 2020. “I was 24 years old at the time and thought it was this cool life experience. I did it in the off-season in Los Angeles. I was very naïve to the doors that it would open down the road.”
After leaving the Giants, Palmer spent a season playing for the San Francisco 49ers and a brief time in the Canadian Football League before pivoting his career to television. He’s since worked as an analyst and commentator on ESPN as well as a special contributor on Good Morning America. Palmer has hosted the Food Network reality shows Spring Baking Championship and Holiday Baking Championship and has a longtime relationship with The Walt Disney Company. He hosted ABC’s reality show The Proposal in 2018 and began hosting the network’s summer series The Ultimate Surfer in 2021.
Jesse Palmer’s Bachelor Season
Palmer chose Jessica Bowlin as the winner of his Bachelor season, but did not propose to the then-22-year-old student. The two split just a month after the finale aired. "Jessica and I shared an incredible romantic journey on the show that began with a friendship that remains strong today," the former football player said in a statement to Extra at the time. "We simply realized that, individually, our next steps take us in different directions."
Jesse Palmer’s Personal Life
Palmer currently lives in New York City, but was born in Toronto and grew up in Ottawa, Canada. His mom, Susan, was a model who later co-founded her own modeling agency, and his father Bill was also a professional football player in the Canadian Football League. Palmer has two brothers, Christian and Billy.
In June 2020, Palmer married his longtime girlfriend, model Emely Fardo. The couple had a wedding in France planned for the summer, but once they realized the ceremony would likely have to be pushed back a year due to the lockdown, they decided not to wait. “So, we had a small, private and intimate ceremony with close friends who lived in New York City,” Palmer told Us Weekly.
Palmer and his wife also have a pet dog: an Aussiedoodle named Loulou, who naturally has her own Instagram page and celebrated her first birthday in August.
Jesse Palmer’s Instagram
Palmer currently has 131,000 followers on Instagram and is active in posting about both his personal life and work endeavors. Many of his posts feature his wife and/or their puppy, and he regularly shares throwback pictures from his football days, behind-the-scenes content from his various television hosting gigs, and photos from his travels.
Based on his Instagram page, Palmer appears to be very close with his family. He regularly shares photos with his mother, father, and two brothers, as well as with his entire extended family. They recently celebrated Christmas together before Palmer dove into promoting Clayton’s Bachelor season.
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