Norah O’Donnell Slated as Keynote Speaker for Commencement

Published on Mon, April 06, 2009

Norah O'Donnell, the chief Washington correspondent for NBC News' 24-hour cable channel MSNBC and a contributing correspondent for NBC's top-rated Today show, will be the keynote speaker at Marywood University's commencement on May 10 at the Wachovia Arena, Wilkes-Barre.

Ms. O'Donnell served as White House correspondent for NBC News from September 2003 to May 2005, reporting for NBC News broadcasts, including the top-rated Nightly News, Today, and MSNBC cable network. Prior to being named White House correspondent, she had been NBC News' congressional correspondent. 

Ms. O'Donnell has covered a number of major breaking news stories for both NBC and MSNBC, including the September 11 terrorist attacks. She received the prestigious Sigma Delta Chi Award for Breaking News Coverage for a Dateline NBC story titled, "D.C. in Crisis," on the night of September 11, 2001. She then covered the Pentagon following the terrorist attacks and traveled extensively with Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, reporting on the war in Afghanistan and the war on terrorism.

A correspondent with NBC News since 1999, reporting for all the news division's broadcasts, Ms. O'Donnell reported on the Republican primaries, the Republican and Democratic conventions, and the Florida recount battle for Decision 2000 political coverage. She also was one of the anchors on MSNBC for election night, reporting on the congressional contests. Prior to joining NBC News, O'Donnell was a staff writer for Roll Call, the Capitol Hill Newspaper, where she covered Congress. She also traveled across the country to cover numerous House and Senate contests. From 1997-99, Ms. O'Donnell was also a contributor and news analyst for MSNBC.

Washingtonian Magazine has named Ms. O'Donnell as one of Washington's 100 most powerful women, and she also has been named to Irish America magazine's 2000 "Top 100 Irish Americans" list.

A native of San Antonio, Texas, Ms. O'Donnell is a graduate of Georgetown University, where she earned a Bachelor of Arts in philosophy and a master's degree in international affairs. She lives in Washington, D.C., with her husband, a restaurateur, and children.