Visser to speak at O’Brien dinner, auction

Visser to speak at O'Brien dinner, auction Photo: CBS �2001 CBS Worldwide Inc. All Right Reserved. The University of South Dakota Athletic Department, in conjunction with Pat O'Brien, announced May 12 that Lesley Visser of CBS Sports will be the featured speaker at the university's fifth annual Pat O'Brien Dinner Auction on June 7 at the Sioux Falls Convention Center.

This year's auction begins at 6 p.m. in Exhibit Hall 1 of the Sioux Falls Convention Center. The cost is $50 per person.

Anyone interested in making reservations by phone can call (605) 677-5959 or 677-8840.

The Pat O'Brien Dinner Auction, which has generated more than $400,000 for scholarships at USD during the past four years, features a dinner, silent auction, as well as a public auction of domestic and international vacations, celebrity meetings, autographed sports memorabilia, jewelry, hunting trips, office equipment, home furnishings, and many more items.

O'Brien, who has more than 20 years in news, sports and entertainment, will serve as the host for the auction.

Visser, of Boca Raton, FL, returned to CBS Sports in August 2000 as a contributor to The NFL Today, college basketball, figure skating and U.S. Open Tennis Championships. She also contributes reports for CBS News.

Visser recently completed her 24th NCAA Men's Basketball Championship, having worked the tournament for the Boston Globe, ESPN and CBS. She is a reporter for The Super Bowl Today, CBS Sports' Super Bowl XXXV pre-game broadcast and also serves as reporter for HBO Sports' Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel.

Prior to joining CBS, she spent nearly seven years with ABC Sports, including serving as the sideline reporter for Monday Night Football. She was the first woman ever to report from the sidelines during a Super Bowl.

While at ABC Sports, she served as reporter for college football bowl games, NFL playoff games and also contributed to ABC's coverage of Triple Crown horse racing.

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In addition, she worked on ABC's Wide World of Sports, major league baseball, including the World Series; figure skating; Special Olympics; skiing; and the NFL's Pro Bowl.

She originally joined CBS Sports in 1984, becoming full-time in 1987. Visser was a regular on The NFL Today. In 1992, she became the first woman to handle the post-game presentation ceremony at the Super Bowl.

In 1974, Visser began her career in sports journalism as member of the Boston Globe sports staff on grant from the Carnegie Foundation. Two years later, she was assigned to cover the New England Patriots, becoming the first-ever female NFL beat writer.

Visser, who was voted the Outstanding Women's Sportswriter in America in 1983, won the Women's Sports Foundation Award for Journalism in 1992. Visser, earned a bachelor's degree in English from Boston College, and won the first AWSM Pioneer Award in 1999. Originally from Quincy, MA, she is married to FOX/Turner sportscaster Dick Stockton.

O'Brien is the co-anchor of Access Hollywood, the daily entertainment news magazine show in its sixth season. Prior to joining Access Hollywood, O'Brien was an anchor for CBS Sports, originally joining the network in 1981. At CBS, he anchored the network's coverage of premiere sporting events, including the Olympic Games, Super Bowl, World Series, NBA Finals and the Road to the Final Four.

In 2000, he was host of CNBC's coverage of the Olympic Games in Sydney, Australia, marking the first-evercomplete cable coverage of the Olympic Games.

O'Brien studied international economics at the Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies at John Hopkins University in Washington, DC.

A graduate of The University of South Dakota (BA, 1970, Political Science), O'Brien, originally of Sioux Falls, lives in Los Angeles with his wife and son.

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