February 17, 2021

Midyear 2021: Trailblazing journalist on keys to women’s advancement

Emmy Award-winning broadcast journalist Deborah Roberts knows a thing or two about working hard to build a successful career.

Roberts grew up in the segregated Deep South and is best known for her work as an ABC News correspondent on such shows as “20/20,” “Nightline,” “Good Morning America” and “ABC World News Tonight with David Muir.”

She also co-wrote the book “Been There, Done That: Family Wisdom For Modern Times” with her husband, Al Roker, the popular weather anchor on NBC’s “Today Show.”

Roberts will share her inspiring story, focusing on the importance of women in leadership and the keys to advancement at “Know Your Worth. The Audacity to Believe in You!” at 4 p.m. CT on Feb. 19 at the 2021 American Bar Association Midyear Meeting, held virtually this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Roberts calls herself “an unlikely success story,” said Kellye Moore, co-chair of Solo, Small Firm and General Practice Division Women’s Initiative Network, sponsor of the Present and Powerful Speakers Series, which highlights successful women leaders.

Moore says that Roberts was born and raised in the small town of Perry, Georgia, coincidentally where she practices law.

Roberts was an easy choice to headline this year’s event, she says. “Her resilience and confidence are born not only from her past experience of opportunity, inequity – but also from strength and love of family in the face of those challenges.” 

In celebration of the 5th annual installment of the Present and Powerful Speaker Series, past headliners are invited to join this year’s virtual gathering. They include:

  • 2020 –­ Kaitlyn Newman from “She Should Run” organization; Eva Guzman of the Supreme Court of Texas; Sharon Sayles Belton of Thomson Reuters and former mayor of Minneapolis; Victoria M. DeFrancesco Soto of University of Texas at Austin.
  • 2019 – Marianne Williamson, author, lecturer and 2020 presidential candidate
  • 2018 – Parisa Khosravi, CNN international journalist
  • 2017 ­– Joann Lublin, author and Wall Street Journal news editor.