News Article

National Archives Foundation Announces New Women’s History Fellowship Honoring Cokie Roberts

August 25, 2020

“It’s important for girls—and boys—growing up to see the contributions of women to the founding of the country and the maintenance of the Republic.” – Cokie Roberts

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, the National Archives Foundation announced that the Cokie Roberts Research Fund for Women’s History will generate new research at the National Archives through a fellowship exploring the complex history of women’s rights in America. 

Through her journalism, commentary and award-winning books, Cokie Roberts showed how well-known and lesser-known women impacted the rich heritage of our nation. The Cokie Roberts Research Fund for Women’s History seeks to encourage the next generation of journalists and authors to continue her legacy and draw new audiences to the stories found in our country’s past.

“Cokie Roberts was an inspiration and she left an indelible imprint that touched the lives of millions,”National Archives Foundation Chair and President James Blanchard said. “She gave a voice to the voiceless women of history through her writing and spirited debates in the media. Cokie also served on our Archives Foundation Board for 17 years, served as our vice chair and presided over many of our outstanding public programs. This fellowship ensures her legacy will be carried on through discovery of lesser-known stories of historical women found in the National Archives.” 

“Cokie devoted her life to uplifting women and telling their stories and this new fund at the Archives will advance a cause she cared passionately about,” said Cokie’s husband of 53 years, journalist Steven Roberts. “I know how pleased and honored she would be at this wonderful initiative.”

The recipients of the fellowship will draw from original research on women’s history for a published article or essay. Published works will appear in a newspaper, magazine, online, book, or an online, academic or professional publication. The research and publication will be featured in a National Archives public program in the William G. McGowan Theater at the National Archives Museum and featured in a National Archives blog post, newsletter, on the website, as well as on social media channels. Details on the application process and deadlines will be released in October 2020.

“As a journalist, political commentator, and historian, Cokie Roberts dedicated her life to learning about and telling us the stories of women and their roles in our founding and in our government. Her work reminds us that women’s participation in our government is relatively recent,” said Archivist of the United States David S. Ferriero. “In 1776, Abigail Adams wrote to her husband John Adams, urging him to ‘remember the ladies,’ and Cokie was determined to remember them as well. I think it is apropos that, on the date of the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment, the National Archives Foundation announces the Cokie Roberts Research Fund for Women’s History. Cokie was a tireless advocate for the National Archives, and this fund will help us in Cokie’s name to ‘remember the ladies.'”

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About the National Archives Foundation

The National Archives Foundation is an independent nonprofit that increases public awareness of the National Archives, inspires a deeper appreciation of our country’s heritage, and encourages citizen engagement in our democracy. The Foundation generates financial and creative support for National Archives exhibitions, public programs, and educational initiatives, introducing America’s records to people around the U.S. and the world. Learn more at

About the National Archives

The National Archives and Records Administration is an independent federal agency that serves American democracy by safeguarding and preserving the records of our Government, so people can discover, use, and learn from this documentary heritage. The National Archives ensures continuing access to the essential documentation of the rights of American citizens and the actions of their government. From the Declaration of Independence to accounts of ordinary Americans, the holdings of the National Archives directly touch the lives of millions of people. The agency supports democracy, promotes civic education, and facilitates historical understanding of our national experience. The National Archives carries out its mission through a nationwide network of archives, records centers, and Presidential Libraries and online at