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Black History Month

History-makers of Southeast Louisiana

Robin Roberts

Robin Roberts at the 72nd Annual Peabody Awards, (Photo from Wikimedia Commons)


Robin Roberts is Southeastern Louisiana University’s most recognizable alumnae. She grew up in Pass Christian, Mississippi, before coming to Southeastern to study communications and play basketball for the Lions. As a student, she worked at KSLU-FM, as a special assignment sports reporter and as sports director at WHMD/WFPR Radio in Hammond. After graduating in 1983, she held sports anchor jobs at TV stations in  Biloxi and Hattiesburg, Mississippi, followed by Atlanta and Nashville. From 1990 to 2005, Roberts worked for ESPN as a contributor to "NFL PrimeTime” and host of "SportsCenter."

In 1995, Roberts took a second job, working for ABC News, as a news anchor and feature reporter for “Good Morning America.” In 2005, she was promoted to co-anchor. In the fall of 2005, Roberts anchored a series of memorable reports from her hometown of Pass Christian, Mississippi, which was devastated by Hurricane Katrina.

A few years later, when Roberts was diagnosed with myelodysplastic syndrome, she chronicled her treatment on “GMA.” These reports earned a prestigious Peabody Award in 2012. The Peabody citation credits her for "allowing her network to document and build a public service campaign around her battle with rare disease" and "inspiring hundreds of potential bone marrow donors to register and raising awareness of the need for even more donors."

In 2011, her Lions jersey, No. 21, was retired. In 2014, she was awarded an honorary doctorate at Southeastern’s spring commencement.

Her many awards include:

  • Women's Basketball Hall of Fame (2012) for her contributions to and impact on the game of women's basketball through her broadcasting work and play.
  • ESPN’s Arthur Ashe Courage Award at the ESPYs (2013)
  • Named one of ESPNW's Impact 25 (2014)
  • The Walter Cronkite Award for Excellence in Journalism (2014)
  • Induction into Sports Broadcasting Hall of Fame (2016)
  • Radio Television Digital News Foundation's Lifetime Achievement Award (2018)

The books listed below are available for you at Sims Memorial Library.