Soledad O’Brien to Speak at Agnes Scott’s 124th Commencement

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Soledad O'BrienEmmy-winning journalist Soledad O’Brien will deliver remarks at Agnes Scott College’s 124th Commencement on May 11 at 9:30 a.m. on the Presser Quadrangle and receive an honorary degree from the college. The Reverend Dorothy Collin (DC) Horne, minister of congregational life at Trinity Presbyterian Church in Charlotte and mother of Senior Class President Sally Horne ’13, will be the speaker for Baccalaureate Vespers on May 10 at 4:30 p.m. in Gaines Chapel, Presser Hall.

O’Brien is a CNN special correspondent. She recently entered into a unique production and distribution agreement with the network to produce long-form programming specials through her company, Starfish Media Group. Launching in June, the 360 media production company and distributor will be dedicated to uncovering and producing empowering stories that take a challenging look at often divisive issues of race, class, wealth, opportunity, poverty and personal stories.

A critically-acclaimed journalist, O’Brien has reported on breaking news from around the globe. In 2011, she won an Emmy for Crisis in Haiti in the category of Outstanding Live Coverage of a Current News Story Long Form. O'Brien was part of the coverage teams that earned CNN a George Foster Peabody award for its BP oil spill and Katrina coverage and an Alfred I. duPont Award for its coverage of the Southeast Asia tsunami. The National Association of Black Journalists named O’Brien the Journalist of the Year and Edward R. Murrow Awards lauded her with the RTDNA/UNITY award for Latino in America in 2010. O’Brien has been integral in hosting and developing the award-winning Black in America franchise, one of the CNN’s most successful international franchises. In 2010, she wrote a critically acclaimed memoir “The Next Big Story: My Journey through the Land of Possibilities,” which chronicles her biggest reporting moments and how her upbringing and background have influenced these experiences.

In addition to Starfish Media Group, Soledad and her husband, Brad, run the Soledad O’Brien & Brad Raymond Foundation, which sends young women to and through college.

“We are thrilled to have Soledad O’Brien speak to the Agnes Scott class of 2013,” said Elizabeth Kiss, president of Agnes Scott. “Ms. O’Brien’s distinguished career as a broadcast journalist, her trailblazing documentaries about race, ethnicity and American identity and her personal philanthropic commitment to the education and empowerment of young women make her a perfect role model for our graduates.”

Horne is minister of congregational life at Trinity Presbyterian Church in Charlotte. She previously served as associate for campus ministry and for Presbytery missions for Providence Presbytery in five upstate South Carolina counties. Horne has a degree in child development and family relations from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and a master’s in Christian education from the Presbyterian School of Christian Education in Richmond. She graduated in 1988 from Union Theological Seminary in Richmond, Va., where she received her Master of Divinity degree. Her first ordained call was to First Presbyterian Church in Concord, NC.

Agnes Scott College educates women to think deeply, live honorably and engage the intellectual and social challenges of their times. Students are drawn to Agnes Scott by its excellent academic reputation, exceptional faculty and metropolitan Atlanta location—offering myriad social, cultural and experiential learning opportunities. This highly selective liberal arts college is known for its diverse and dynamic intellectual community. Through SUMMIT, it provides every student, regardless of major, with an individualized course of study and co-curricular experiences that develop leadership abilities and understanding of complex global dynamics.