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Andrea Roane

Broadcast journalist Andrea Roane was born on October 5, 1949 in New Orleans, Louisiana to Frederic and Ethel Roane. She attended the Holy Ghost Elementary School, and graduated from the Xavier University Preparatory School in New Orleans. Roane went on to receive her B.A. degree in secondary education in 1971, and her M.A. degree in drama and communications in 1973, both from LSU - New Orleans, now the University of New Orleans.

From 1971 to 1974, Roane worked as a middle school and high school English teacher. She was also coordinator of cultural services for the New Orleans Parish Public Schools, and served as an administrator and principal of the New Orleans Center for Creative Arts. In 1975, Roane was hired as an education reporter for the New Orleans public television station WYES, where she also hosted a weekly magazine show and was the station's project director of a federally funded education show. Roane then worked for WWL-TV, a CBS affiliate, as an education reporter from 1976 until 1978. She returned to WYES for one year, and, in 1979, was hired as a host and correspondent for WETA public broadcasting station. Then, in 1981, Roane was hired as the Sunday evening and weekday morning anchor for WUSA Channel 9 in Washington, D.C., where she went on to serve in a number of news anchor roles. In 1993, she initiated an innovative Washington, D.C. breast cancer awareness program called Buddy Check 9.

Roane has served as co-chair of the Kennedy Center Community and Friends Board; as a member of the Capital Breast Care Center Community Advisory Council; and as a trustee of the National Museum of Women In The Arts. She is also a sustaining director of the Prevent Cancer Foundation. She served on the Georgetown Lombardi Cancer Center Health Disparities Initiative Community Advisory Board; the National Catholic Education Association Board; and served as a trustee of the Catholic University of America. Roane is also a Dame of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta; and a member of the Women's Forum of Washington. She is a lifetime member of both the NAACP and the National Council of Negro Women, and a member of the LINKS, Inc, Metropolitan D.C. Chapter.

Roane has received many awards and honors for her work. She has won multiple Emmy and Gracie Awards. She was also named one of Washingtonian Magazine's "Washingtonians of the Year" in 2006, and was honored by the Sibley Memorial Hospital Foundation with its Community Service Award. In addition to being named the 2010 Rebecca Lipkin Honoree for Media Distinction by Susan G. Komen For the Cure, she received the 2012 Faith Does Justice Award from Catholic Charities.

Roane and her husband, Michael Skehan, live in Washington, D.C. They have two children: Alicia and Andrew.

Andrea Roane was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on January 27, 2014.

Accession Number

A2014.039

Sex

Female

Interview Date

1/27/2014

Last Name

Roane

Maker Category
Marital Status

Married

Schools

Holy Ghost School

St. Katharine Drexel Preparatory Academy

University of New Orleans

Search Occupation Category
First Name

Andrea

Birth City, State, Country

New Orleans

HM ID

ROA02

Favorite Season

Spring

State

Louisiana

Favorite Vacation Destination

Tuscany, France

Favorite Quote

Try It You May Like It.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

District of Columbia

Birth Date

10/5/1949

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Washington

Country

United States

Favorite Food

Soft Shell Crab

Short Description

Broadcast journalist Andrea Roane (1949 - ) served as a news anchor on WUSA-TV Channel 9 in Washington, D.C. from 1981.

Employment

WUSA-9 / Gannett

WETA / PBS

WYES / PBS

WWL / CBS

New Orleans Public Schools

Favorite Color

Egg Yolk Yellow

Timing Pairs
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DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Andrea Roane's interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Andrea Roane lists her favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Andrea Roane describes her mother's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Andrea Roane talks about her Creole heritage

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Andrea Roane describes her maternal family's emphasis on education

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Andrea Roane talks about her mother's community in New Orleans, Louisiana

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Andrea Roane describes her father's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Andrea Roane describes her father's military service

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Andrea Roane talks about how her parents met

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Andrea Roane describes her parents' personalities and who she takes after

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Andrea Roane talks about her brother

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Andrea Roane describes her earliest childhood memory

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Andrea Roane describes her neighborhood in New Orleans, Louisiana

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Andrea Roane describes the sights, sounds and smells of her childhood

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Andrea Roane describes her family's food traditions, pt. 1

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Andrea Roane describes her family's food traditions, pt. 2

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Andrea Roane remembers the music of New Orleans, Louisiana

Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Andrea Roane remembers celebrating Mardi Gras

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Andrea Roane talks about the Mardi Gras krewes in New Orleans, Louisiana

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Andrea Roane recalls traveling with her paternal grandmother

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Andrea Roane remembers the Holy Ghost Catholic School in New Orleans, Louisiana

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Andrea Roane recalls her early interests and activities

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Andrea Roane remembers the assassination of President John Fitzgerald Kennedy

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Andrea Roane remembers the assassination of Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Andrea Roane recalls the exclusion of women of color from television news

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Andrea Roane remembers the Xavier University Preparatory School in New Orleans, Louisiana, pt. 1

Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Andrea Roane remembers the Xavier University Preparatory School in New Orleans, Louisiana, pt. 2

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Andrea Roane recalls her decision to attend Louisiana State University in New Orleans

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Andrea Roane remembers her influential professors

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Andrea Roane talks about her teaching experiences in New Orleans, Louisiana, pt. 1

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Andrea Roane talks about her teaching experiences in New Orleans, Louisiana, pt. 2

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Andrea Roane describes her transition from teaching to education reporting

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Andrea Roane remembers her work at WYES-TV in New Orleans, Louisiana

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Andrea Roane talks about her programming for WYES-TV

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Andrea Roane remembers her time at WWL-TV in New Orleans, Louisiana

Tape: 4 Story: 9 - Andrea Roane remembers moving to Washington, D.C.

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Andrea Roane remembers reporting on Hurricane David in Mobile, Alabama

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Andrea Roane recalls joining WETA-TV in Washington, D.C.

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Andrea Roane describes her transition to WDVM-TV in Washington, D.C.

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Andrea Roane remembers the notable journalists on WDVM-TV

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Andrea Roane describes her experiences as a news anchor on WDVM-TV

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Andrea Roane remembers her co-anchor, Mike Buchanan

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Andrea Roane remembers the changes in the community of Washington, D.C.

Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Andrea Roane talks about the importance of balanced news coverage

Tape: 5 Story: 9 - Andrea Roane remembers being removed from her news anchor position

Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Andrea Roane recalls returning to the morning news at WUSA-TV in Washington, D.C.

Tape: 6 Story: 2 - Andrea Roane remembers the attacks of September 11, 2001

Tape: 6 Story: 3 - Andrea Roane talks about her colleagues at WUSA-TV

Tape: 6 Story: 4 - Andrea Roane talks about the Buddy Check 9 program, pt. 1

Tape: 6 Story: 5 - Andrea Roane remembers her awards and honors

Tape: 6 Story: 6 - Andrea Roane talks about the Buddy Check 9 program, pt. 2

Tape: 6 Story: 7 - Andrea Roane reflects upon the highlights of her career

Tape: 6 Story: 8 - Andrea Roane describes her production work on WUSA-TV

Tape: 6 Story: 9 - Andrea Roane talks about the representation of minorities in the news

Tape: 6 Story: 10 - Andrea Roane talks about the changes in the media industry

Tape: 6 Story: 11 - Andrea Roane talks about her J.C. Hayward's experience of breast cancer

Tape: 7 Story: 1 - Andrea Roane talks about the criminal charges against her son

Tape: 7 Story: 2 - Andrea Roane reflects upon her life

Tape: 7 Story: 3 - Andrea Roane describes her hopes and concerns for the African American community

Tape: 7 Story: 4 - Andrea Roane reflects upon her legacy

Tape: 7 Story: 5 - Andrea Roane talks about her family

Tape: 7 Story: 6 - Andrea Roane remembers her international travels

Tape: 7 Story: 7 - Andrea Roane talks about President Barack Obama

Tape: 7 Story: 8 - Andrea Roane describes her plans for the future

Tape: 7 Story: 9 - Andrea Roane describes how she would like to be remembered

Tape: 7 Story: 10 - Andrea Roane narrates her photographs, pt. 1

Tape: 8 Story: 1 - Andrea Roane narrates her photographs, pt. 2

DASession

1$1

DATape

4$5

DAStory

8$5

DATitle
Andrea Roane remembers her time at WWL-TV in New Orleans, Louisiana
Andrea Roane describes her experiences as a news anchor on WDVM-TV
Transcript
So I wasn't sure I wanted to leave a place like that, but what did my father [Frederick Roane, Sr.] say? "Try it, you might like it." So I met with Mickey [Mickey Wellman], took me out to a fabulous lunch at Galatoire's in the French Quarter [New Orleans, Louisiana], one of the finest restaurants we have there, and offered me a job in the documentary unit, and I said, "Yes." And I, I wasn't really happy there. They were all very nice and my husband worked in the same--at the same studio, this is WWL-TV, the CBS affiliate. It was owned by Loyola University [Loyola University New Orleans, New Orleans, Louisiana] at the time, and--but I never got to see him 'cause he was in the news department and I was in doc, and--you know, it, it, it was okay. Everyone was nice, but I didn't really feel great about that assignment and when the opportunity came to go back to YES [WYES-TV, New Orleans, Louisiana], I jumped at it, and when I went back, I was given the opportunity of working on some MacNeil Lehrer shows which is now the news hour that you see with Judy Woodruff and [HistoryMaker] Gwen Ifill. It was the Robert MacNeil, Jim Lehrer 'NewsHour' ['The MacNeil/Lehrer News Hour'; 'PBS NewsHour'], and I co-anchored from New Orleans [Louisiana], with Robert MacNeil, a show on the emerging black Republican Party in the South, had never done a network anything, and this was network when you think about the PBS [Public Broadcasting Service] network. And their people (background noise) (pause)--I was asked to do a 'MacNeil/Lehrer News Hour,' and it was on the black Republican Party--the emerging black Republican Party in the South--had never done anything with any kind of network operation; this was network for PBS, and I was waiting to communicate with Robert MacNeil and the producers came in early in the morning and, "Oh, we're great--how do you say your name? Is it (pronunciation) Andrea, Andrea?" I said, "It's Andrea [HistoryMaker Andrea Roane]," and, "Oh, this is great. Where can we have lunch? Where do you recommend for lunch?" So went out to lunch with the producers and the director still had not talked with my co-anchor, Robert MacNeil, and when we got back, it's like maybe 3:30, 4:00, the phone call from--, "How do you say your name?" "Andrea." "Call me Robin, (pronunciation) Andrea, Andrea, Andrea, looking forward to talking with you on the air." That was it. And then we did the show, and it was a pretty good show, if I must say so myself, it was a really good show, and then they were gone. And didn't think any more about it, but then the phone started to ring and people had inquiries about me but I wasn't interested in leaving New Orleans [Louisiana] at all. And then had the opportunity to do another 'MacNeil/Lehrer,' this time Jim was the co-anchor and the subject was the wetlands in Louisiana. And who knew how important a subject matter that would be in the 1970s when we go forward to Katrina [Hurricane Katrina] and not having the wetlands and what that did as far as destruction. And we talked about that and after that, the phones really started ringing. So this is like '77 [1977], '78 [1978]. And opportunities came to go to Chicago [Illinois] with the NBC affiliate [WMAQ-TV]. Cleveland [Ohio] called and, and at this point, I was engaged to be married to my husband to be, Michael Skehan, and I wasn't interested in leaving my home town and besides, he was a news cameraman so I wasn't going to go anywhere where he couldn't go, and little did I know that there were friends at the station who knew people, and the woman who is my associate producer, she had been the secretary at one time for the guy who was the talent scout for NBC Chicago, and another friend, Dinney Bott [ph.], her cousin was vice president of radio for NBC, so all of these people were getting together and we ended up having an interview--my husband and I both had an interview. I said, "I'm not interested in leaving, plus I'm getting ready to be married; my husband's a cameraman, so--gotta find something for the two of us." "Where would you like to go?" I, you know, I said, "Washington, D.C.," that was his home town, "and New York [New York]." This is the number one market 'cause I knew it would never happen (laughter).$You went to the noon time show (unclear) (simultaneous)--$$(Simultaneous) Went to the noon time show with Bob Dalton.$$This is in '83 [1983] then, right? Not sure?$$Eighty-two [1982], '83 [1983]? And got pregnant again during the ratings book (laughter), and this time our son Andrew [Andrew Skehan] was born on the first day of the book, May 1st, 1983, and I was out for the entire ratings period. My news director said, "Never do that again." I said, "I promise I won't do it ever again." And came back doing the noon show, doing reporting, covering the arts, what to do on the weekend kind of things, those segments--substituting on the five P.M. show which we had now expanded the five from a half hour to an hour, substituting for J.C. Hayward on that show at six o'clock, substituting at times for [HistoryMaker] Maureen Bunyan and then the, the news wanted to do a four P.M. newscast, and--wow, how about that? I mean we had, we had done some things, I think I had proved myself, and I remember when the Challenger [Space Shuttle Challenger] exploded, I was getting ready to do the noon show, and my news director, Dave Pearce, came out and said, on camera, "Do this." And it was literally a sheet of paper (unclear), the Challenger has exploded, and I think it was--what was it, seventy-three or eighty-three seconds after takeoff. And to the camera--we were on even before CBS came on with their breaking news about this story. And--keep going, keep going, still didn't have a whole lot of wire copy, but luckily I had interviewed Christa McAuliffe and her backup Elizabeth Morgan [sic. Barbara Morgan], as the teachers in space--before, so I was able to, you know, just kind of stretch and stretch. So I, I thought I could do this job and I went into the news director's office and I said, "I'd like to be considered for the position of an anchor on that four o'clock newscast." And he said, "Thank you for letting me know."$$I'm interested in the time management aspect of this, 'cause these times mean that you're sleep- I mean the morning show for instance, what was your routine (simultaneous)--$$(Simultaneous) The morning show wasn't as hard as it is now (laughter). That morning show--literally when we first started in, in '81 [1981], it was a cut in, so it was 6:25, 7:25. I was here like five o'clock in the morning, and then--I've never really been a nine to fiver. I may have always been a little bit earlier or just a little bit later, but then it became a little bit more of a normal hour when our second child was born, so from '83 [1983] to about I guess, until about 1995, it was pretty much a, a normal, middle of the day kind of thing, which worked well with the family. When my children were young, I was home early. When they were older, I was either working a shift where I could do mommy stuff for one school, my husband [Michael Skehan] would pick up the other school. He was home doing homework when I, you know--it kind of worked out. But the schedule has been all over the place, but mainly I've been a morning person and in 2000, when I went back to mornings, it just started to get earlier and earlier, and earlier. But let's not jump around too much.