Melissa Rauch and Winston Rauch have been writing partners since they met in college
Melissa Rauch and her husband, Winston Rauch (né Beigel), aren’t just romantic partners but companions in their professional lives, too.
Long before Melissa was known for her role as the high-pitched Bernadette Rostenkowski on The Big Bang Theory, the star met her now-husband, Winston, a writer and producer. The two connected as freshmen at Marymount Manhattan College, where they became writing partners and collaborated on comedic sketches.
Eventually, they started dating and wed after college, a moment that Winston honored by taking his wife's last name. Today, the actress and producer share two children, Sadie and Brooks. While Melissa and Winston largely keep their family and relationship private, they are no strangers to sharing their work with audiences.
The couple worked on their first big project: a one-woman theater show called The Miss Education of Jenna Bush — a satirical coming-of-age story about President George Bush’s daughter — in 2005. Since then, the pair has debuted the 2015 dark comedy The Bronze, a movie about a former Olympic gymnast and the ups and downs of local celebrity, and Night Court, a reimagination of the popular original ‘80s television sitcom, which premiered in early 2023.
“He is my best friend and the love of my life, in addition to being an incredible writing partner. The only thing I regret is not meeting him even sooner, as my life has just gotten better since he came into it,” Melissa told New Jersey Monthly in 2014. “Winston and I spend all our free time writing new projects. It’s so rewarding to see those passion projects come to life.”
So, who is Melissa Rauch’s husband? Here’s everything to know about Winston Rauch and his relationship with the actress.
He’s a writer and producer
Winston is a writer and producer, and each of his projects have been completed alongside his wife, Melissa, per IMDB.
As Melissa mentioned on the podcast At Home with Linda & Drew Scott in 2020, her husband's credits include a comedy short film called the Condom Killer — which she also cowrote and directed right after the pair moved to Los Angeles after college.
Winston was also the mind behind the 2015 Sundance Film Festival hit The Bronze that he cowrote and produced with Melissa. The couple collaborated again for the 2023 reboot of the NBC sitcom Night Court, for which they are both executive producers.
Melissa and Winston run their own production company, After January Productions, a subsidiary of Warner Bros., that produces comedy and drama projects. The couple's production company was launched following the release of their movie, The Bronze, per Deadline.
“One of my favorite things in life has always been writing with Winston,” Melissa told the LA Times in 2015, ahead of The Bronze's premiere at Sundance.
For Melissa and Winston, writing is a collaborative effort. They begin with an outline or overall idea for the scene. “[Then] we’ll either improvise what the dialogue should be, or we’ll just sit next to each other and pitch ideas for the dialogue,” Melissa told Interview magazine in 2016. “Sometimes I’ll take a stab at the scene, he’ll take a stab at the scene, and we’ll combine the best of.”
They wrote their first big project while job-hunting post-college
After graduation in 2005, Melissa and Winston were waiting tables and looking for jobs when they decided to write a one-woman show for Melissa to perform called The Miss Education of Jenna Bush, a satire piece based on George W. Bush’s daughter, Jenna Bush Hager.
It was largely a coming-of-age story about a young woman finding her way into adulthood “while also using the Bush presidency for some comedic exploration,” Melissa told Interview magazine in 2016.
“We set it the night before Jenna was going to be teaching her first day of elementary school. She was drunk and hungover and needed to become an adult in one night," she added.
He took her last name
After Melissa and Winston married, the couple went the less conventional route, with him taking his wife's last name. He changed his name from Winston Beigel to Winston Rauch.
The couple didn’t plan it, but Winston took matters into his own hands.
“It was not even something that we had really talked about. But he had said a couple times, ‘You know, people oftentimes will just call me Mr. Rauch anyway,’ ” Melissa told podcast hosts Linda and Drew Scott on an episode of their podcast, At Home in 2020.
One day, Winston called her from the social security offices, saying that he had officially changed his last name to Rauch, Melissa said on the podcast.
They have two children
Melissa and Winston welcomed their first child, Sadie Rauch, in December 2017. Melissa announced the birth of their daughter on Instagram on Dec. 5.
“Our hearts are bursting at the seams with love for her. I will never take for granted the difficult road it took to get here,” she captioned the post, alongside a pink and gold graphic with the words “It’s a girl.”
Earlier that year, in July, Melissa published an essay on Glamour revealing that she had tragically suffered a miscarriage before becoming pregnant with Sadie, describing it as "one of the most profound sorrows I have ever felt in my life."
In May 2020, Melissa and Winston welcomed their second child, Brooks Rauch, during the height of the pandemic.
“Words can't describe how grateful I am to have this baby boy join our family, but to say that it is a surreal time to be bringing life into the world is an understatement,” Melissa wrote on Instagram alongside a photo of a blue baby cap with the name “Brooks” stitched on the front.
As the kids have grown up, they’ve begun to realize what their parents do for a living — at least partially. In February 2023, Melissa appeared on The Jennifer Hudson Show and told host Jennifer Hudson that as a result of her show Night Court, her children believe she’s a real judge.
“Is it wrong [that] I haven’t corrected them?” Melissa quipped.
They cofounded a charity
Melissa and Winston launched and manage the U.S. chapter of the pediatric cancer charity Oscar’s Kids, which they founded in 2021, according to the organization’s website. The charity is in partnership with the Irish chapter of Oscar’s Kids, both raising money for the research of the brain tumor Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma (DIPG).
Oscar’s Kids was established in honor of a 5-year-old The Big Bang Theory fan from Ireland named Oscar who was diagnosed with terminal brain cancer in 2018. Oscar was a huge fan of the show and called Melissa’s character Bernadette his “girlfriend.”
On a whim, Oscar’s parents reached out to Melissa on social media, and Melissa responded, keeping in touch with Oscar via messages and videos throughout his illness, according to the organization's website. After Oscar died, they came up with the idea to found a pediatric cancer charity in his honor.
“By helping launch Oscar’s Kids, I wanted to do something to honor his life and find a cure for this devastating disease,” Melissa told PEOPLE in 2021. “We’ll raise money and awareness so other parents won’t have to endure what [Oscar’s parents] have. Our goal is for parents like them to see their children lead long and healthy lives.”
They spend a lot of time together
As romantic and professional partners, Melissa and Winston spend much more time together than most couples — seeing each other at home and work.
On Late Night with Seth Meyers in 2023, Melissa talked about what it’s like to spend so much time with your partner.
“When you work together and you live together, there’s no water cooler chat. I can’t be like, ‘What did you do last night,’ because I know!” Melissa told host Seth Meyers. “We argued over who was going to do the dishes, then we watched 10 minutes of a Hallmark movie and fell asleep.”
She continued, “If [Winston] was late, he couldn’t say that he was stuck in traffic because I saw him sitting at the kitchen table playing fantasy football.”
But Melissa also enjoys the positives of working with her husband. “This is going to sound so cheesy,” she told RogerEbert.com in 2016. “There’s something about watching them do what they’re meant to do that is so gratifying.”
He has directed Melissa at work
Melissa and Winston have a talent for writing comedy for television and movies, but he also has a sense of humor in real life.
For the acrobatic sex scene in The Bronze, between Melissa’s gymnast character and another gymnastics couch, played by Sebastian Stan, Winston was game to make it as interesting as possible.
“In the script we wrote, ‘crazy gymnastics sex,’ but we didn’t just leave it at that. We thought that would be unfair to our director Bryan Buckley,” Winston told the LA Times in 2015. “We did outline what we thought that might be, not ever believing that he would be able to bring it to life, because it [was] intense and intricate.”
Melissa also revealed Winston was a good sport, too. “It’s very interesting to have your husband behind the monitor while you’re shooting something like this and you hear him say like, ‘I think we can get another take of that,’ ” Melissa told reporters at a screening of the movie in 2016.
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