Sawyer is also an award-winning investigative journalist, on topics ranging from biological weapons production in Russia to daycare abuse. She brought American viewers a shocking report on the warehousing of Russian children in state-run orphanages; a diary of life inside a maximum security prison for women, where Sawyer spent two days and nights; an investigation into the neglect and abuse at state-run institutions for the mentally retarded; and a landmark investigation into pharmacy prescription errors.
Other important investigations include undercover reports on food sanitation at the Food Lion grocery chain and uncovering the questionable business practices of three major televangelists. Sawyer's revealing hidden-camera investigation of racial discrimination, which documented the different experiences of blacks and whites in America, won the Grand Prize in the prestigious Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Awards.
Sawyer's overseas reporting includes her coverage of the attempted coup in Moscow, when she made her way into the office of Boris Yeltsin at the moment the attempted Soviet coup was at its crisis. During the Gulf War, she traveled to Egypt to interview President Hosni Mubarak and to Amman, Jordan, where she interviewed King Hussein and Queen Noor. She is one of the few Western journalists ever to report from North Korea on the famine and the government's attempt to keep it secret.
Prior to joining ABC News, Sawyer spent nine years at CBS News. She was the first woman to co-anchor "60 Minutes." Prior to that, she co-anchored the "CBS Morning News" and was CBS News' State Department correspondent.
She was podium correspondent for the 1988 Democratic and Republican National Conventions, and a floor correspondent for the 1984 Republican and Democratic National Conventions and for the 1980 Democratic Convention.
In addition to her Dupont Awards, Robert F. Kennedy awards, and numerous Emmys, her many honors include the grand prize of the premier Investigative Reporters and Editors Association, two George Foster Peabody Awards for public service, an IRTS Lifetime Achievement Award, Broadcast Magazine Hall of Fame, and the USC Distinguished Achievement in Journalism Award. In 1997, she was inducted into the Television Academy of Fame.
Prior to joining CBS News, Sawyer held several positions in the Nixon administration. She was part of the Nixon-Ford transition team from 1974 to 1975. She also assisted former President Nixon in the writing of his memoirs in 1974 and 1975.
Sawyer began her career in broadcasting in 1967 in Louisville, Ky., where she was a reporter for WLKY-TV until 1970.
A native of Glasgow, Ky., and raised in Louisville, Sawyer received a B.A. from Wellesley College in 1967 and completed a semester of law school before deciding on a career in broadcasting.