Laura Ling
Laura Ling

Laura Ling, a crusading human rights journalist who was imprisoned in North Korea, will keynote PRSA’s International Conference slated for San Diego from Oct. 20-22.

While reporting on the trafficking of women for Current TV in 2009, Ling and colleague Euna Lee were captured by North Korean soldiers along their country's border with China and sentenced to a dozen years of hard labor.

After 140 days, president Clinton traveled as a special envoy to North Korea and negotiated their freedom.

Ling documented her ordeal in a memoir, “Somewhere Inside: One Sister’s Captivity in North Korea and the Other’s Fight to Bring Her Home,” which she wrote with her sister, Lisa.

She’s also reported on slave labor in the Amazon, women’s rights in the Middle East and the energy crisis in sub-Saharan Africa.

“Laura Ling’s career has been, and continues to be, marked by poise in the face of adversity and a fierce determination to bring truth to light,” said Debra Peterson, PRSA Chair. “Her stories are remarkable and captivating, and we are looking forward to hearing and learning from her inspiring journey.”

Ling has hosted “Conquered” on Z Living, a series about people who have broken boundaries to overcome obstacles and reach their goals; and two documentaries on E!, “E! Investigates” and “Society X with Laura Ling,”

She has produced for Channel One News and co-created the MTV documentary “Breaking it Down.” Ling’s work has aired on ABC's “Nightline,” NBC and PBS.

PRSA previously announced Washington Post journalist Bob Woodward and Microsoft’s VP-corporate communications Frank Shaw as speakers at the San Diego conference.