Allen Ludden (October 5, 1917 - June 9, 1981) was an American television presenter and game show host. He was born Allen Ellsworth in Mineral Point, Wisconsin. The surname Ludden was his stepfather's.
Ludden hosted many game shows, including the G.E. College Bowl, but he was most famous for hosting both the daytime and primetime versions of Password on CBS and ABC from 1961 to 1975. He started hosting a daytime version of the game, Password Plus on NBC, in 1979, but illness forced him off the show in 1980.
Ludden, a Roman Catholic, was a widower with three children - his wife Margaret McGloin had died in 1961 - when he proposed to the twice-divorced Betty White, whom he had met on Password, at least twice before she accepted, and they were happily married from June 14, 1963 until Ludden's death. They appeared together in an episode of The Odd Couple featuring Felix's and Oscar's appearance on Password.
At the time of his death at age 63, he was battling stomach cancer. He was posthumously awarded a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame next to his widow's star. In 2001, TV Guide named Ludden the greatest game-show host of all time.