May 18, 2024

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ABC News President Kim Goodwin is off the network

ABC News President Kim Goodwin is off the network

ABC News President Kim Goodwin is off the network.

Debra O’Connell, president of Disney Entertainment’s news and networks group, and Goodwin shared the news in internal memos sent to employees Sunday night.

Goodwin told staff that after reflecting on her tenure, she has “decided to retire from broadcast journalism.”

“Anyone who is passionate about what we do knows there is no other business like it, so this was not an easy or quick decision,” Goodwin continued. He added: “But after a long thought, I am sure that it is the right choice for me and I look to the future and prioritize what is most important to me and my family.”

O’Connell said in her memo that she will lead ABC News in the meantime.

“For now, I will oversee ABC News and I look forward to working with the leadership team as we chart a new path forward together,” O’Connell wrote. “Thank you for your patience and understanding during this transition period.”

Goodwin joined ABC News in 2021 after a long career as an executive and producer at CBS News.

However, it was only in February of this year that Disney veteran O’Connell was tasked with integrating the businesses of ABC News and the ABC television stations. Goodwin signed a new deal to remain at ABC News at that time, although the restructuring limited her power somewhat.

Her tenure faced some public challenges, perhaps most notably suspension and eventual dismissal GMA3 He co-hosted Amy Robach and TJ Holmes last year. It has also been the target of employee grumbling, although a few national newsroom leaders have escaped in recent years.

On Saturday, the National Association of Black Journalists issued a statement addressing some of the reports, writing that “there appears to be an intent to cite anonymous sources as critics of Goodwin, along with using derogatory or stereotypical terms to describe her.” At the same time, these reports completely ignore the sources and facts that indicate that Goodwin received significant support within the organization.

NABJ added that it plans to meet with ABC and Disney executives to discuss the matter.

Read O’Connell and Goodwin’s memoirs below.

Note from Debra O’Connell to her team:

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a team,

I wanted to share Kim’s note below. Dana and I would like to take this opportunity to express our deepest gratitude to Kim for her service as President of ABC News. Kim has led this team through important times in our world, and she has done so with respect for the brand and the profession — and for that and more, we thank her.

Our reputation and credibility are hard-earned, and we would also like to acknowledge the exceptional work you deliver every day. As the #1 news network for 12 straight seasons and counting, ABC News is home to the best in the business. From morning to day, evening and beyond, this team is ready 24/7 to serve our nation with the news, people and events that shape our world.

For now, I will oversee ABC News and I look forward to working with the leadership team as we chart a new path forward together. Thank you for your patience and understanding during this transition period. Since I assumed this role in February, my goal has been – and will continue to be – to provide this team with the means to build on our success and continue the proud tradition of ABC News into a future full of opportunity and innovation.

If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to me or your senior leaders.

Thank you,

Debra

Kim Goodwin’s note to ABC NEWS:

Good evening ABC News,

Forty years ago, I began my career out of college as an enthusiastic and enthusiastic executive producer at WTXL in Tallahassee, where I was in charge of the 6 and 11 p.m. news. The staff was very small, and on busy news days, I had to go out and report as well. Little did I know then what extraordinary opportunities awaited me as I began to chart a course through a career in which there were very few women — and even fewer women of color — in leadership roles. So, I understood and appreciated the profound significance of being the first Black woman to lead a national news network when I accepted the position of president of ABC News just over three years ago. It is both a privilege and a debt to those who broke the ceiling before me to lead a team whose brand is synonymous with trust, integrity and a strong determination to be the best in the business.

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Now, four decades and countless miles later, and having worked at all three broadcast news networks and ten local stations in nine cities, I’ve come full circle from the small but mighty ABC affiliate in Florida. I have decided to retire from broadcast journalism. After attending j-school at Florida A&M University, which I loved, I was lucky and blessed enough to have done almost every job in the industry, including anchor, investigative reporter, news director, field producer, and network/special events executive producer. And more before moving up to the executive ranks. Anyone who is passionate about what we do knows there is no other business like it, so this was not an easy or quick decision. But after much thought, I am sure it is the right choice for me as I look to the future and prioritize what is most important to me and my family.

ABC News was No. 1 when I joined the team, and I’m proud to say we’re still No. 1 — an accomplishment that has been punctuated in recent months by the highest honors our profession has to offer, from Edward R. Morrow Award for Overall Excellence in Television, an Alfred I. duPont-Columbia Award for our groundbreaking series “Power of Water,” and for our first-ever Primetime Emmy Award nominations for “Pretty Baby: Brooke Shields” and “Aftershock.” And just last week, our documentary about Uvalde, “Print It Black,” won Best Feature Documentary at the Dallas International Film Festival, where it premiered. I’m especially proud of our unprecedented Uvalde 365 project, an unparalleled year-long commitment to documenting a community’s emotional journey after a mass shooting.

In 2022, we were all thrilled to receive 41 Emmy nominations, the most in 53 years. We have the best morning news shows, daytime network shows, evening news, and Friday newscast. We consistently rank #1 on all major live TV events, including, most recently, “Eclipse Across America,” in partnership with Nat Geo. Our shows can regularly be found in the top 10 shows on Hulu.

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Beyond awards and ratings, our success is perhaps best measured by the people at ABC News. This is an exceptional team doing exceptional work – together. You are best in class in every category, and it has been nothing short of wonderful to see you tackle task after task, providing comprehensive coverage from around the world to our viewers at a time when honest reporting is essential to the future of our great nation.

We pride ourselves on covering all communities and meeting our audiences where and when they need us, and no project exemplifies that better than ABC News Live. When I started, it was only the little broadcast train that could; And now, thanks to your hard work and dedication, it’s a big train that can do it every day. Together, at Hulu last season, we launched “Impact

We should be especially proud of our success with ABC News Studios, which we have built from the ground up to now become a premiere studio for nonfiction and documentary, making more than 120 hours of award-winning content annually. We also created the first climate unit among broadcast news networks. So many innovations and initiatives in what seems like the blink of an eye. Together, we are committed to creating a cultural shift, where people can be themselves, feel seen and heard, while doing their best work. For all these reasons and more, I leave ABC News and this profession with the sincerest feelings of pride, accomplishment, and gratitude. My heart is full.

I want to thank Dana Walden and Debra O’Connell for ensuring we always have the resources and support to do our work. Finally, thank you to ABC News for the love, support and inspiration. Over the years, hundreds of you have sent emails, texts and made phone calls that have warmed my heart. In this important election year, and as we look to the months ahead, the importance of what we are doing cannot be overstated. Remember, there is fun in journalism.

I leave with my head held high and wish the entire team continued success.

#oneabcnews

In faith and grace,
Kim