When Roz Abrams started out in the early 1980s as a young broadcast journalist, she was mentored by the likes of pioneer Belva Davis, the first black television and radio journalist on the West Coast.
As a result, Abrams went on to scale great heights in the broadcast field, including working at CNN as a reporter-anchor at its inception, becoming the first African-American female journalist to join WABC-TV, as well as being the second anchorwoman of color in the New York City television market, among other achievements.
Today the broadcast veteran is retired at 65 and spends her days as a mentor and philanthropist—both her ways of repaying the help she received on the way up the career ladder, she told The Rootduring a recent interview.
Abrams was on hand Wednesday to speak at Queens Gateway to Health Sciences Secondary School in Queens, N.Y., which kicked off the fifth annual Back to School With the HistoryMakers program. The HistoryMakers, a Chicago-based nonprofit organization, helps to raise awareness about the achievements of African Americans around the country.
“I’m a HistoryMaker, and one of the things that they insist upon is that we go out into the community once a year for the Back to School program and reach out to the kids, explain to them that I did well because I received help from giants, and that my shoulders are available to them for whatever they want to do,” she said before the program. “I also tell them it’s hard work.”