Speaker Biography

Soledad O'Brien  

TitleBroadcast Journalist and Executive Producer, Hearst Television
BioSoledad O’Brien is the host of Hearst Television’s acclaimed political magazine show Matter of Fact, which has emerged as the #1 new weekend show in syndication. With O’Brien at the helm, Matter of Fact immediately established itself as a ratings juggernaut, outpacing every weekly political show on cable, and on the broadcast side vaulting to second place in aggregate total viewers in the Hearst markets where the show was first launched. Distributed nationally by Sony Pictures Television, the program reaches a diverse cross section of viewers in nearly 90% of the country. O’Brien also reports regularly for HBO’s “Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel,” “PBS NewsHour,” and many other programs. 

O’Brien is the CEO of Starfish Media Group, a multi-platform media production company dedicated to telling empowering and authentic stories on a range of social issues. 

Earlier in her career, O’Brien co-anchored “Weekend Today,” and contributed segments to the “Today” show and “NBC Nightly News.” In 2003, O’Brien joined CNN, where she co-anchored the morning news program. O’Brien’s coverage of race issues won her two Emmy awards, and she earned a third for her reporting on the 2012 presidential election. Her coverage of Hurricane Katrina for CNN earned her and the network a George Foster Peabody Award. She also won the Peabody for her coverage of the BP Gulf Coast Oil Spill, and her reporting on the Southeast Asia tsunami garnered CNN an Alfred I. DuPont Award. 

In the wake of Hurricane Katrina, O’Brien and her husband Brad Raymond created the PowHERful Foundation, which helps young women get into and through college. Along with sponsoring individual scholars, the Foundation hosts free empowerment conferences around the country. 

She is also the author of two books, her critically acclaimed memoir “The Next Big Story” and “Latino in America.” 

O’Brien lives in New York with her husband and four children.