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Former CNN Anchor Soledad O'Brien Named Visiting Fellow at Ed School

By Lauren E. Claus, Contributing Writer

In honor of her efforts to expand educational opportunities, the Harvard Graduate School of Education announced yesterday that journalist and television anchor Soledad O’Brien ’88-’00 will be a Distinguished Visiting Fellow at the school for the 2013-2014 academic year.

“It is an honor to join the esteemed scholars of the Harvard Graduate School of Education community next year,” O’Brien said in a press release.

Administrators at the Ed School said that O’Brien will bring valuable experience and perspective.

“We are very excited to have her join our community,” said Michael Rodman, the assistant dean for communications and marketing at the School of Education. According to Rodman, O’Brien was chosen because “she’s been out there in the field, working on educational equality.”

Along with her husband, Brad Raymond, O’Brien oversees the Soledad O’Brien and Brad Raymond Foundation, which encourages young women to work toward a college education through mentoring, financial support, and advising. O’Brien also serves as the chair of the board of directors of The After-School Corporation, a non-profit which seeks to expand educational opportunities for urban students.

“We are tremendously excited to welcome Soledad to the Harvard Graduate School of Education community and look forward to working with her to ensure that all children have access to a high quality education,” Ed School Dean Kathleen McCartney said in a press release Wednesday.

An accomplished broadcast journalist, O’Brien worked at CNN from 2003 until 2012, during which time she co-anchored the show “American Morning” and covered breaking news stories. After leaving CNN in 2012, O’Brien continued working in the media industry with her production company, StarFish Media.

While the specific ways Soledad will be involved at the Ed School are still unclear, Rodman commented that there will definitely be “interactions with students and faculty.”

According to Rodman, O’Brien is excited to interact with undergraduate as well as graduate students at the School of Education.

“She’s very excited about being part of the Harvard community as a whole,” Rodman said.

This article has been revised to reflect the following clarification:

CLARIFICATION: May 6, 2013

An earlier version of this article stated that broadcast journalist Soledad M. O’Brien's graduating class year is 2000. To clarify, O'Brien took time off during her senior year in 1988 and then completed her bachelor's degree in 2000.

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