CPB’s Pat Harrison Honors Actress and Philanthropist Doris Roberts
Late actress promoted public media documentary on pediatric cancer
May 27, 2016
WASHINGTON, D.C. (MAY 27, 2016) -- Pat Harrison, president and CEO of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, was among those paying tribute to actress and philanthropist Doris Roberts at a May 25 celebration of her life in Hollywood, Calif. Roberts died in her sleep April 17, 2016, at age 90.
A theater and television actress best known as the meddling mother on Everybody Loves Raymond, Roberts also worked tirelessly on behalf of children, chairing the Kids Center Research Foundation and working with youth in areas of conflict around the world as a Culture Connect Ambassador as part of a program sponsored by the U.S. Department of State.
“Doris was known worldwide, she had created one of the first organizations to help children and families meeting the challenge of pediatric AIDS—and she was fun and could relate to kids,” Harrison said.
Roberts promoted the CPB-funded ITVS documentary A Lion in the House that tracked five families that had children treated for cancer at the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center. The award-winning two-part series aired on Independent Lens in 2006. Roberts appeared in a video supporting the production and spoke at a special screening for Congressional staffers.
At the memorial, Harrison read a letter from Gen. Colin Powell who, as Secretary of State, had recognized Roberts for her work as a Culture Connect Ambassador. He noted Roberts “had traveled extensively connecting with youth by sharing her story of struggle and success. She led master classes, discussions, and served as a caring mentor to young people living in areas of conflict.”
Harrison further remembered Roberts as someone “who never stopped learning or sharing or caring,” and who “made a difference all of our lives, and especially in the lives of all those kids.”
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