Cokie Roberts

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Cokie Roberts
Cokie Roberts-a.jpg
Born Mary Martha Corinne Morrison Claiborne Boggs
(1943-12-27) December 27, 1943 (age 70)
New Orleans, Louisiana, U.S.
Residence Bethesda, Maryland, U.S.
Nationality United States
Alma mater Wellesley College
Occupation Journalist, Author
Employer NPR, ABC
Known for Journalist, author, pundit, television personality
Title Contributing Senior News Analyst
Spouse(s) Steven V. Roberts (m. 1966)
Children Rebecca Roberts
Lee Roberts
Parents Hale Boggs
Lindy Boggs
Relatives Barbara Boggs Sigmund (Sister)
Tommy Boggs (Brother)

Mary Martha Corinne Morrison Claiborne Roberts (née Boggs;[1] born December 27, 1943), best known as Cokie Roberts, is an American journalist and author. She is a contributing senior news analyst for National Public Radio as well as a regular roundtable analyst for the current This Week With George Stephanopoulos. Roberts also works as a political commentator for ABC News, serving as an on-air analyst for the network.

Roberts, along with her husband, Steven V. Roberts, writes a weekly column syndicated by United Media in newspapers around the United States. She serves on the boards of several non-profit organizations such as the Kaiser Family Foundation[2] and was appointed by President George W. Bush to his Council on Service and Civic Participation.[3]


Mary Martha Corinne Morrison Claiborne Boggs[1] was born on December 27, 1943 in New Orleans, Louisiana. She received the sobriquet "Cokie" from her brother Tommy, who could not pronounce "Corinne".[1] Cokie Roberts is the third child and youngest daughter of the late ambassador and long-time Democratic Congresswoman from Louisiana Lindy Boggs and of the late Hale Boggs, also a Democratic Congressman from Louisiana. He was Majority Leader of the House of Representatives and a member of the Warren Commission. He was lost on a plane which disappeared over Alaska on October 16, 1972.[4] Her sister, the late Barbara Boggs Sigmund, was mayor of Princeton, New Jersey and a candidate for U.S. Senate from New Jersey. Her brother Tommy Boggs is a prominent Washington, D.C. attorney and lobbyist.

Roberts attended the Academy of the Sacred Heart, an all-girls school in New Orleans, before graduating from the Stone Ridge School, an all-girls school outside Washington, D.C. in 1960.[5] She graduated from Wellesley College in 1964, where she received a BA in Political Science.[6]

She has been married to Steven V. Roberts, a professor and fellow journalist, since 1966. They met in the summer of 1962, when she was 18 and he was 19.[7] They currently reside in Bethesda, Maryland. She and her husband have two children and six grandchildren. Their daughter Rebecca Roberts is also a journalist and was one of the hosts of POTUS '08 on XM Radio.


Roberts serves as a senior news analyst for NPR, where she was the congressional correspondent for more than ten years. In addition to her work for NPR, Roberts is a political commentator for ABC News, serving as an on-air analyst for the network.

Roberts was the co-anchor of the ABC News' Sunday morning broadcast, This Week with Sam Donaldson & Cokie Roberts from 1996 to 2002, while serving as the chief congressional analyst for ABC News. She covered politics, Congress and public policy, reporting for World News Tonight and other ABC News broadcasts.

Before joining ABC News in 1988, Roberts was a contributor to PBS in the evening television news program The MacNeil/Lehrer NewsHour. Her coverage of the Iran-Contra Affair for that program won her the Edward Weintal Prize for Diplomatic Reporting in 1988.[8] From 1981 to 1984, in addition to her work at NPR, she also co-hosted The Lawmakers, a weekly public television program on Congress.

While working in Guatemala, Sister Dianna Ortiz, a Catholic nun from New Mexico, was raped and tortured by members of a death squad. Although there was no doubt of Ortiz's torture, Roberts "confronted Ortiz during an interview with accusations of fraudulence." Roberts' brother, Tom Boggs, working for the advertising firm of Patton, Boggs, & Blow, was paid by the Guatemalan military to promote a more positive image of the death squads and the military dictatorship in Guatemala.[9][10] The incident raised doubts about Roberts' credibility as a journalist.[11]

Prior to joining NPR, Roberts was a reporter for CBS News in Athens, Greece. She also produced and hosted a public affairs program on WRC-TV in Washington, D.C. Roberts is also a former president of the Radio and Television Correspondents' Association.

Awards and honors[edit]

Roberts has won numerous awards, such as the Edward R. Murrow Award,[12] the Everett McKinley Dirksen Award for coverage of Congress[13] and a 1991 Emmy Award for her contribution to "Who is Ross Perot?"[14]


In 2002, Roberts was diagnosed with breast cancer.[15] She was successfully treated for this.[16]


Writing in, Jack Shafer described Roberts' weekly segments for NPR's Morning Edition as "four minutes of on-air blather" that relied heavily on her use of the word "interesting." [17]


  • We Are Our Mother's Daughters (1998), essays
  • Founding Mothers: The Women Who Raised Our Nation (2004). The book explores the lives of the women behind the men that wrote the Constitution of the United States and the Declaration of Independence.
  • Ladies of Liberty: The Women Who Shaped Our Nation (2008), continues the story of early America's influential women who shaped the US during its early stages, chronicling their public roles and private responsibilities.[citation needed]
  • with Steven Roberts, From This Day Forward (2000)
  • with Steven Roberts, Our Haggadah: Uniting Traditions for Interfaith Families (2011)


  1. ^ a b c Roberts, Cokie (1993-03-08). (Video). Talk Show with Charlie Rose. Charlie Rose (talk show). PBS Retrieved 2008-05-20.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  2. ^ "Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation – Board of Trustees". Retrieved 2010-03-01. 
  3. ^ President's Council on Service and Civic Participation. "Meet the Council Members". USA Freedom Corps. Retrieved 2008-04-10. 
  4. ^ Horowitz, Jason (August 15, 2010). "Alaska plane crash a painful reminder for families of Boggs and Begich". Washington Post. 
  5. ^ Stone Ridge School. "Alumnae Exellence". Retrieved 2008-04-11. "Cokie Boggs Roberts '60" 
  6. ^ Wellesley College. "Notable Wellesley College Alumnae". Retrieved 2008-04-10. 
  7. ^ Roberts, Cokie; Roberts, Steven (2000-02-28). A conversation with Cokie & Steve Roberts (Video). Talk Show with Charlie Rose. Charlie Rose (talk show). PBS. Retrieved 2008-05-20. 
  8. ^ Krogh, Peter F. (1995-04-25). "ISD Report" (PDF). Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service. Georgetown University. p. 4. Archived from the original on 2008-04-14. Retrieved 2008-04-11. 
  9. ^ Stein, Jeff (22 May 1996). "The Self-Inflicted Wounds Of Colby's CIA". The Seattle Times. Retrieved 9 December 2013. 
  10. ^ Sherman, John (2000). Latin America in Crisis. Oxford: Westview Press. p. 111. ISBN 0-8133-3540X. 
  11. ^ Cook, Julian. "Guatemala: Throwing Myself at the Ground and Hoping to Miss". JulianCook.Com. Retrieved 9 December 2013. 
  12. ^ "Recipients of the Edward R. Murrow Award". Corporation for Public Broadcasting. Retrieved 2008-04-11. 
  13. ^ "Everett McKinley Dirksen Awards for Distinguished Reporting of Congress". National Press Foundation. Retrieved 2008-04-11. 
  14. ^ NPR. "Cokie Roberts, NPR Biography". Retrieved 2008-04-11. 
  15. ^ "TV News Analyst Cokie Roberts Battles Breast Cancer". American Cancer Society Online. 2002-08-08. 
  16. ^ Larry King Live (May 22, 2004). "Interviews With Cokie Roberts et al" (transcript). Retrieved on March 27, 2009. "No, no. My breast cancer is gone."
  17. ^

External sources[edit]

Media offices
Preceded by
David Brinkley
This Week co-anchor with Sam Donaldson
December 15, 1996 – September 8, 2002
Succeeded by
George Stephanopoulos