Before they were famous, many truly influential men and women started by serving their country in the US military or grew up in military families.

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ELIZABETH VARGAS
TV Journalist and News Anchor

Elizabeth Vargas was born to a Colonel in the U.S. Army. She spent her youth moving from base to base in Germany, Belgium and Japan, as a GI Kid.

Vargas graduated with a Bachelor's Degree in journalism from the University of Missouri in Columbia, where she made her debut broadcast as a reporter/anchor for KOMU-TV.

Elizabeth Vargas spent four years as a reporter and anchor for WBBM-TV, where she earned a reputation as one of the most flexible and versatile TV talents. She went on to become the first woman to anchor an evening newscast in the U.S. since Connie Chung, and the first woman of Puerto Rican and Irish American heritage to be named a network nightly news anchor.

Vargas is the first woman to anchor an evening newscast in the U.S. since Connie Chung, and the first woman of Puerto Rican and Irish American heritage to be named a network nightly news anchor. She is said to be particularly proud of an ABC special report in which she questioned why the Laci Peterson case merited more attention than two other similar cases, one involving a black woman and the other involving a Hispanic woman.

Another story she did, based on the book The Da Vinci Code and the role of Mary Magdalene, helped fuel a nationwide religious debate. Vargas stated that for centuries Mary Magdalene has been portrayed as a prostitute by the church, despite evidence to the contrary. She went on to question the strictly limited role of women within the church.

In 1999, Vargas won an Emmy Award for her coverage of the Elián González story and in 1998, she was nominated for an Emmy Award for her 20/20 investigation into the wrongful conviction of Betty Tyson.

In late 2006, Vargas returned as co-anchor of 20/20 and primary presenter of ABC News specials.

Despite Katie Couric being the first woman named to anchor an evening newscast solo, Vargas can be considered the first de facto solo woman evening news. She is considered to have been a groundbreaker for her industry.



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