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VOICES OF RECOVERY

Meet Hilary Roberts

Find out a superpower she’d like to have, what’s on her bucket list, and one thing she wishes she’d had known when she was younger.

How old are you? 50

Where do you live? I split time between Dallas and Los Angeles.

Who are you, and what do you do? I am a recording artist, speaker, philanthropist, car enthusiast and animal lover.

What is your relationship to addiction and recovery? I became an alcoholic and drug addict as a teenager and struggled to get sober for years, ruining many opportunities, and finally had my last sobriety date on May 9, 1997. I now have 22 years sober, and I am extremely grateful for that.

How did you get into music? When I was 10, I wanted to be Annie. I was influenced by my dad, who had presented jazz to me, and also my mom, who listened to opera and classical. Then, I went to see Annie, and I wanted to be her. I started singing “Tomorrow” and discovered that I had this voice. I started singing from there. I learned I just had this gift, and it was bigger than me.

What is the Red Songbird Foundation? The Red Songbird Foundation aims to help adult survivors of childhood trauma caused by sexual, physical and verbal abuse by providing financial resources to those who need support that specifically addresses their primary issues.

What is on your bookshelf? Books about recovery, the Bible, The Brain that Changes Itself, The Shack, The Shame Game and some romance novels

What is a superpower you’d like to have? To instill in people the knowing that they are precious and loved and can do great things

What’s something most people don’t know about you? That I have stuffed animals on my bed and that I take one with me in my luggage to different cities I travel to

What is on your bucket list? Meet the Dalai Lama, Keanu Reeves, Ellen and Oprah; be interviewed by Tom Bilyeu; go on an African safari to see the beautiful animals and take pictures of them; and travel to the Maldives and too many other countries to name

What is one thing you are glad to have done but wouldn’t do it again? The flying swing at Elitch Gardens, an amusement park in Denver

What would you do if you won the lottery? Continue to help heal people with the Elton John AIDS Foundation, Steven Tyler’s Janie’s Fund and my own Red Songbird Foundation; help to eradicate human trafficking; save animals; and help God’s kids

What item in your closet do you wear the most? My pajamas

What actor would play you in a movie? Amy Adams or Isla Fischer

Who is your ultimate dinner date? Stevie Wonder

What brings you the greatest joy? Helping others and singing on stage

What is the best gift you’ve ever received? My sobriety, my recovery

What are you proudest of? The song “Fight to the Other Side.” It was written for my friend Annie, who had been diagnosed with a rare form of muscular dystrophy, the journey through which had taken her to the depths of despair. She had always been a huge support in my life, and I wanted to be there to support her as she had been there for me. It was Annie who, when my belief in myself was suffering under the rejection of heartbreak, encouraged me to continue to believe that my musical dream could come true. So what greater gift could I give this friend of mine, who was facing such a horrible disease, than a song from the very depths of my soul? Having a song that saves someone’s life — there is no greater gift than saving a life.

What are the most important lessons you’ve learned in life? To keep going no matter what. To face my pain and my fears. To try to become the best woman I can be. And that everyone is doing the best they can. They are not doing it to me; they are just doing it.

What is your favorite quote? “I am not what I ought to be, I am not what I want to be, I am not what I hope to be in another world; but still I am not what I once used to be, and by the grace of God I am what I am.” John Newton

What is the best advice you’ve been given? Don’t drink no matter what.

What is one thing you wish you knew when you were younger? That I am valuable, worthy, lovable and loved

What does your future hold? I hope to continue to help others, to have songs that make a difference and become more of who God wants me to be in this world.

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