Lifetime Achievement Award

Robin Roberts
co-anchor, ABC’s “Good Morning America”

ABC NEWS – Robin Roberts (ABC/Heidi Gutman)

Acceptance Remarks

Oh thank you one and all! Oh goodness gracious – Martha Raddatz, stellar example of lifetime achievement – so proud to be your colleague and friend and it’s whole lot of fun as well. To all of my by ABC colleagues that are here, President James Goldstein, thank you for being so fearless and fierce. Tom, Barbara, our executive producer at “Good Morning America,” Michael Corn, oh my goodness, Steve Jones leading our radio division – and that’s my first love: radio. You saw in the video I was a student at Southeastern Louisiana University and majoring in communications. Went to the local radio station in town and said, “I want to be your news director. I want to be your sports director. Let me work, and they said, “You can do that. We’ll let you have a primetime radio show, but you’re going to have to deejay on the weekends,” and I’m like going, you know, you’re in college and I’m already busy, and they said, “Oh did we tell you, we’re a country music radio station.”

That’s my first love: radio!

I remember it oh so well: WFPR 14 Country [unclear] Robin [unclear] playing the best of coooouuuntry music. Oh, Saturday night in that little radio station and Bubba would call in. “You sound perdy, I wanna bring you home to meet my mamma.” I’m like, “No, you do not! Trust me. Would not work well for either of us, Bubba!” Creepy calls.

My colleagues at my production company John, Evelyn, Jeffrey Jacobs – all of you bring out the very best in me. You challenge me each and every day, and I’m eternally grateful.

Congratulations to all the award recipients tonight. You are a hard act to follow and I don’t mean just tonight, I mean in everything that you do, and I’m in awe of all of your vast accomplishments.
To this fine organization, bless your hearts. Thank you so much for this honor, and more importantly, for protecting us. So grateful for that! I know it’s being said that responsible journalism is more important than ever before in light of what’s happening here in DC and all around the world. I’m also grateful, though, that early on in my career I was taught that responsible journalism mattered, from the very beginning.

Thank you so much for this honor, and more importantly, for protecting us.

For the mentors that you met in that video – Mary Perosco, my first boss at WNPR, Allen Grigss, news director in Nashville who is now a professor at a university in Nashville teaching young journalists and how incredibly lucky they are to have that man! And when I think about the very beginning, how grateful I was to be taught those qualities.

Early on in my career I was taught that responsible journalism mattered, from the very beginning.

Our beloved parents, Lawrence and Lucy Marian Roberts. They met and fell in love here in D.C. They were students at Howard University, and as you saw my father went on to be a Tuskegee airman, my mother a longtime educator. And how lucky I am to be the baby sister of Butch and Sally-Ann and Dorothy. Oh my goodness! I benefit from your council and that of mother and dad as they cheer us on from their heavenly balcony right now.

My sister Sally-Ann, who I..I’m, I’m amazed she’s not praising the Lord right now. She’s usually…her hands are up to the heavens! Yep, there she is! Yeah, yes, thank you Lord! So, yeah…cause our parents taught us the three D’s. Most parents taught the three R’s, we were taught the three D’s: discipline, determination, and Da Lord. Those were the three D’s in the Roberts family.

But my sister Sally-Ann last week retired after 40 glorious award-winning years as a news anchor and reporter in New Orleans. What an example! What an example, with all three siblings I had in my home all teaching me to not let fear stand in the way of your destiny and our family motto which I feel is very appropriate for why we are gathered here this evening: we may not have it together, but together we have it all!

Blessings to all and thank you for this award!


Robin Roberts is co-anchor of ABC’s “Good Morning America.” Under her leadership, the broadcast has won five Emmy Awards for Outstanding Morning Program and the 2017 People’s Choice Award for Favorite Daytime TV Hosting Team.

Roberts has been honored with the Walter Cronkite Award for Excellence in Journalism, was inducted into the Broadcasting & Cable Hall of Fame as well as the Sports Broadcasting Hall of Fame, and named one of Glamour’s Women of the Year. She was voted the “Most Trusted Person on Television” by a Reader’s Digest poll in 2013.

Roberts founded her own production company, Rock’n Robin Productions, which creates original broadcast and digital programming for ABC and other networks, ranging from informational shows and documentaries, to live special events.

Roberts was diagnosed with breast cancer in June 2007, and five years later, she was diagnosed with MDS. Roberts underwent a bone marrow transplant, her sister Sally-Ann was a perfect match. Her story triggered an outpouring of support from across the nation. She joined forces with Be the Match to inform the public about the need for more donors, and since her diagnosis, the bone marrow registry has seen a tremendous increase.

Her battle has been recognized with awards and honors from organizations around the country, including The Susan G. Komen Foundation and The Congressional Families Cancer Prevention Program. Roberts was also honored with a George Foster Peabody Award and Gracie Award. Additionally, Roberts was recognized with the Arthur Ashe Courage Award at the ESPY’s in July 2013 for the strength and courage she has displayed throughout her life and career.

Roberts was named co-anchor of “Good Morning America” in May 2005. She began contributing to the morning program in June 1995, and prior to that, she was a contributor to ESPN as a host on “SportsCenter” and contributing to “NFL PrimeTime.” Roberts has worked in broadcasting for more than 30 years.

Roberts graduated cum laude from Southeastern Louisiana University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in communications. She was a standout performer on the women’s basketball team, ending her career as one of the school’s all-time leading scorers and rebounder. In 2012, Roberts was named an inductee to the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame.

Roberts is the author of From the Heart: 7 Rules to Live By and her memoir, “Everybody’s Got Something,” in which she tells the story of her battle against a life-threatening illness, learning life’s hardest lessons, and her inspiring return to the GMA anchor desk.

Roberts is a native of the Mississippi Gulf Coast and currently resides in New York City. Follow Robin on Twitter: @RobinRoberts.

RTDNF Lifetime Achievement Award 2018

Updated on 2019-01-11T17:15:09+00:00, by firstawards.