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Cokie and Rebecca Roberts to join Loyola in tribute to Lindy Boggs

February 27, 2009

Emmy Award-winning journalist and bestselling author Cokie Roberts, H’93, and her daughter, award-winning public radio reporter, Rebecca Roberts, will visit Loyola University New Orleans during a special tribute to former congresswoman and U.S. Ambassador to the Vatican Lindy Boggs.

The event, “Celebrating Lindy Boggs — A Legacy of Change,” is being held in honor of Women’s History Month and will take place Tuesday, March 10, at 7 p.m., in Roussel Performance Hall on Loyola’s main campus. It is free and open to the public.

The evening will begin with a special screening of local filmmaker Bess Carrick’s documentary, “Lindy Boggs: Steel and Velvet.” After the film, guest host and former television anchor Margaret Dubuisson, along with Boggs’ daughter Cokie and granddaughter Rebecca, will discuss Boggs’ impact on social change, particularly as it relates to women. DVD copies of the documentary, as well as the book which Cokie contributed to, “Women of Our Time: 75 Portraits of Remarkable Women,” will be available for purchase at the event.

While Boggs, who received an honorary degree from Loyola University in 1977, will not be in attendance, her legacy at the university can be seen through the work of the Lindy Boggs National Center for Community Literacy. This center is a result of Boggs’ commitment to adult literacy and her diligence in finding funding for the program through a grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

Located in the J. Edgar and Louise S. Monroe Library on Loyola’s main campus, the Boggs Center is a resource for literacy providers, giving them access to the most up-to-date information and training; sponsoring professional development opportunities; and cultivating community partnerships with other organizations committed to enhancing literacy locally, nationally and internationally.

The tribute to Lindy Boggs is sponsored by the university in conjunction with the Women’s Resource Center and the Lindy Boggs National Center for Community Literacy. To learn about other Loyola events celebrating Women’s History Month, call the Women’s Resource Center at 504-864-7880.

For more information regarding the Lindy Boggs event, contact Meredith Hartley in Loyola’s Office of Public Affairs at 504-861-5883 or by e-mail at mhartley@loyno.edu.

About Lindy Boggs:

Born March 13, 1916, on Brunswick Plantation near New Roads, La., Lindy Boggs has seen this country go through dramatic changes, and has been a key player in many of them. As the first woman elected to Congress from Louisiana, Boggs served nine terms in the U.S. House of Representatives, until she retired in 1990. She was also the permanent chairwoman of the 1976 Democratic National Convention, which made her the first female to preside over a major party convention. While in office, Boggs created the groundbreaking Women’s Caucus, which changed the way women’s issues are approached in politics.

Known as a shrewd political negotiator with considerable southern charm, Boggs’ feats within congressional committees are legendary. Through her work on these committees, she established equal credit and service pay equity for women; advocated programs within NASA and the National Science Foundation that targeted the inclusion of minorities and women; and worked on the Energy and Water Sub-Committee to reduce the loss of wetlands along the Mississippi River.

In 1994, she was inducted into the Louisiana Political Museum and Hall of Fame, and in 1997, President Bill Clinton appointed her U.S. ambassador to the Vatican, a position she held until 2001. Boggs was later awarded the Congressional Distinguished Service Award in 2006 for her time in the House of Representatives.

Boggs is the wife of the late House Majority Leader Hale Boggs, and the mother of three children: Cokie Roberts, Tommy Boggs, a prominent lobbyist, and the late Barbara Boggs Sigmund, former mayor of Princeton, N.J., and a candidate in the 1982 New Jersey Democratic senatorial primary election.

About the guests:

Cokie Roberts, Emmy-Award winning journalist and best selling author, is a contributing senior news analyst for National Public Radio as well as an on-air political commentator for ABC News.

Rebecca Roberts is an award-winning public radio reporter and is currently a substitute host for NPR News programs including “Morning Edition,” “Talk of the Nation” and “Weekend Edition Sunday.”

Margaret Dubuisson is the director of communications for Catholic Charities and is a former television anchor for WVUE-TV.

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Loyola at a Glance is written and distributed for the faculty, staff, students and friends of Loyola University New Orleans. It is published by the Office of Public Affairs, Greenville Hall, Box 909, 7214 St. Charles Avenue, New Orleans, LA 70118. (504) 861-5888.

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