Barbara Jill Walters (born September 25, 1929) is an American broadcast journalist, author, and television personality. She has hosted morning television shows Today and The View, the television news magazine 20/20, co-anchored the ABC Evening News, and is a contributor to ABC News. Walters first became known as a television personality when she was a writer and segment producer of "womenʻs interest stories" on the morning NBC News program The Today Show, where she began work with host Hugh Downs in 1962, once even modeling a swimsuit when an expected model did not show up. She is considered one of the best interviewers on the small screen, and her yearly interviews with nominees for Oscars is one of the most popular shows on television on the nights of the oscarcasts. In 1996, Walters was ranked #34 on the TV Guide "50 Greatest TV Stars of All Time."
On June 15, 2007, Walters received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. She has won Daytime and Prime Time Emmy Awards, a Women in Film Lucy Award, and a GLAAD Excellence in Media award. Her impact on the popular culture is illustrated by Gilda Radner's humorous "Baba Wawa" impersonation of her on Saturday Night Live, featuring her idiosyncratic speech with its rounded "R".
In 2008, she was honored with the Disney Legends award, an award given to those who made an outstanding contribution to The Walt Disney Company, which owns the network ABC. That same year, she received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the New York Women's Agenda. On September 21, 2009, Walters was honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award at the 30th Annual News and Documentary Emmy Awards at New York City's Lincoln Center.