Adelia "Dede" Elmer Robertson was born in Ohio, on December 3rd, 1927. Her parents, Ralph and Florence Elmer had two children, Ralph, her brother, and Dede. Her father was the Vice President of the Hanna Paint Manufacturing Company in Columbus, Ohio.

Dede attended Bexley public schools in Ohio and then went on to attend Ohio Wesleyan University and Ohio State University where she earned a bachelor’s degree in Social Administration.  She worked as a fashion model and was a beauty queen in the Miss Ohio State contest.

Dede continued her education at Yale University School of Nursing where she received a Master of Nursing Degree.  While attending Yale, she met M.G. “Pat” Robertson, a student in the Yale Law School.  

As Dede tells it, a rather obnoxious law student was attempting to monopolize her time.  So, to escape his attentions she fled to the refreshment table where she attempted to look busy.  Unfortunately, she got too close to the candles on the table and her hair caught on fire.  Standing nearby, Pat noticed her problem, rushed over and put out the fire with his bare hands.  “He put the fire out in my hair, but started a fire in my heart,” Dede says.  They were married in 1954.

Dede devoted herself to being a wife and mother.  The Robertsons had four children, Timothy, Elizabeth, Gordon, and Anne.  Dede has said that her greatest accomplishment was “raising four wonderful children who love and serve the Lord.”  Dede’s family now includes fourteen grandchildren and twenty-three great-grandchildren.

In addition to being a wife and mother, Mrs. Robertson had a wide range of responsibilities and interests. She applied her nursing training, working at the Boulevard Hospital in New York, and then at Portsmouth General Hospital, in Portsmouth, VA.  Later, she served as Assistant Professor of Nursing at Tidewater Community College, in Tidewater, VA.

In 1959, Dede was baptized in Long Island Sound where she described an encounter with God and received the baptism of the Holy Spirit. “The Lord met me that day.  And it changed my life very definitely.  It was as if the whole world had become golden…” said Mrs. Robertson.

Dede was an integral part of the growth and direction of The Christian Broadcasting Network.  She labored alongside Pat and was his sounding board and inspiration in their life’s journey.  Pat looked to Dede for advice and spiritual confirmation on the many decisions they faced.  As he puts it, “I often asked Dede, what does this little girl from the Midwest think about this?”

A life-long student of the scriptures, Dede was a gifted Bible teacher, teaching young people, and hosting and teaching women’s Bible studies.

Mrs. Robertson was also an accomplished writer, authoring two books, My God Will Supply  and The New You. She also wrote a monthly column, All In A Woman’s Day, for Christian Life Magazine.

In 1987 and 1988, Dede campaigned enthusiastically for Pat Robertson in his run for the Republican nomination for the office of President of the United States.  Dede visited fifty-two American cities on behalf of her husband during his presidential bid.

Dede traveled extensively on behalf of the ministry of The Christian Broadcasting Network, Operation Blessing International, and The Flying Hospital’s medical missions.  Traveling across Asia, the Middle East, Central and South America, she worked tirelessly to bring humanitarian and medical aid to hurting people throughout the world. 

Mrs. Robertson served on the Board of Trustees of Regent University, on the Board of Directors of The Christian Broadcasting Network, the Board of Directors for Operation Blessing International, and the Board of Directors of Physicians For Peace.

In 1982, she was appointed as the principal U.S. delegate to the Inter-American Commission of Woman, where she represented the United States from 1982 to 1990.

Dede Robertson was selected Christian Woman of the Year in 1986.

Mrs. Robertson was also a gifted interior designer and expert in antiques.  She was responsible for the design of all the interiors of the ten Georgian-style buildings at the CBN Center including The Founder’s Inn.  She was an accomplished gardener who also enjoyed needlework, knitting, and painting furniture.

Dede Robertson was a woman of great faith, a champion of the Gospel, and a remarkable servant of Christ who has left an indelible print on all that she set her hand to during her extraordinary life.