HOUSTON — Oprah Winfrey will be making a difference in Houston long after her last show.
Jordan Mouton believes her brief moment in the Oprah spotlight changed her course.
Mouton first met the Queen of Talk when a neighbor wrote a letter to Oprah describing how she was an amazing teen in 2005.
The 15-year old, who was suffering from a rare eye disease that would leave her legally blind, was invited to Chicago.
"I was wondering why I was on the show because it was for amazing teens and I hadn’t done anything amazing," recalled Mouton.
Before she had time to really understand what was going on, Oprah told the girl from northwest Houston that she was going to fulfill her wildest dream.
That’s when Oprah called out to the audience, "Ashton, where are you?"
Mouton burst into tears as actor Ashton Kutcher walked through the studio and gave her a hug.
"The fact that I got to meet her was a pretty major deal, probably a bigger deal than meeting him [Kutcher]," Mouton said with a smile.
That moment on national television inspired Mouton.
"I actually started judo the same year I was on the Oprah show," she said.
Since then, Mouton has been breaking judo records and breaking down barriers.
"I was totally blind by 19," said Mouton.
But she didn’t let that stop her.
Now at age 21, Mouton is training for the U.S. Paralympics. She will find out in November if she qualifies for the 2012 games in London.
Across town at the Yes Prep Academy on Lawndale Street, they are all smiles about their brand new school. It was built with money donated by Oprah’s Angel Network.
When Melanie Singleton, a Yes Prep Academy teacher, was invited to be on Oprah’s show, she thought she was going to talk about the school.
"So I knew something wasn’t right when we were asked to come up to the stage," recalled Singleton. "You always see the surprises she gives to many families and companies, but never did we think we would be privileged enough to be one of those recipients."
"Were you crying," asked KHOU 11 News reporter Tiffany Craig.
"No because I didn’t want to mess up my makeup!" Singleton said.
The new school building will be completed June 3. It will hold 22 classrooms, a library and offices.