Elizabeth Smart released a statement Thursday afternoon in relation to her new gig as commentator for ABC News. In the statement, released through her publicist, Smart said: "I am committed to giving back and getting involved where I can make the greatest difference through child advocacy work. Partnering with ABC provides a powerful tool to help me accomplish this. I look forward to working to create awareness for and helping bring other missing children home as well as helping to prevent others from experiencing what I went through."
Smart has become accustomed to being in the spotlight, which makes the job she is taking with ABC News a perfect fit for her. The girl, who all of America has come to love and admire, will be joining forces with ABC News "as a commentator focusing on missing persons and child abduction cases." What better person for the job than she? As both a person who was kidnapped and raped at age 14, and the daughter of parents who sought desperately to find her, it makes absolute sense to place her in the position.
Julie Townsend, spokeswoman for ABC, said, "Smart can provide viewers with a unique perspective. We think she'll help our viewers better understand missing persons stories. This is someone with the perspective to know what a family experiences when a loved one goes missing."
Elizabeth Smart, now 23, could be on the air as soon as sometime within the next few weeks, according to Townsend. The deal between Smart and ABC has already been in the works for months.
After Smart's kidnapper, Mitchell, was sentenced, Elizabeth said she was looking forward to begin a new segment in her life and wished to focus on helping missing children. She and her father, Ed Smart, are creating the Elizabeth Smart Foundation, "which will focus on protecting children from falling victim to kidnapping and sexual crimes."
While some victims of kidnapping and rape wish to move their lives in a direction completely opposite from their life-altering ordeal, other, like Smart, grab ahold of the experience that was thrown at them and use it in whatever way they can to help others going through a similar situation.
According to Townsend, Elizabeth Smart will likely "contribute across the spectrum of the ABC's programs and formats, including appearances on Good Morning America, Nightline, ABC News. and radio."