DETROIT – Former CBS News correspondent Aleen Sirgany was recognized Saturday as a ‘Lebanese American Trailblazer’ for her career in journalism and service to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.
The gala was held in Detroit by the Lebanese American Club of Michigan (LACOM), a non-profit organization which aims to preserve Lebanese culture in the state.
“I’m honored by this recognition,” Sirgany said. “Lebanon is always in our hearts, in our lives, in our family.”
The former journalist now serves as a senior advisor to the American Lebanese Syrian Associated Charities, the fundraising wing for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.
As a Washington-based CBS correspondent, Sirgany covered dozens of global headlines, including the White House, the attacks on September 11 and Hurricane Katrina.
She was born in Beirut, and spent the first five months of her life in a Lebanese orphanage.
While covering the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in 2005, Sirgany wanted to visit Lebanon and see the orphanage where she was born.
“I thought, there is no way I’m going to be so close to Lebanon and not go see my family,” she said. “I did not know I could not have my passport stamped.”
It took Sirgany 10 years to make the trip.
“I fell in love with Lebanon,” she added. “It was so emotional, that it was almost surreal.”
WATCH: Aleen Sirgany Tribute Video