ABC News’ President, Kim Godwin, to Step Down

Kim Godwin, the president of ABC News, told employees on Sunday night that she was retiring, capping a tumultuous tenure marked by infighting, damaging leaks and a major shake-up of the news division’s leadership ranks.

In an email to employees, Ms. Godwin said that she reached her decision to leave after a period of “considerable reflection.” In a separate note to employees, Debra O’Connell, a longtime Disney executive, said she would be overseeing ABC News.

“Anyone who’s passionate about what we do knows there’s no other business like it, so this was not an easy or quick decision,” Ms. Godwin said in her note. “I’m certain it’s the right one for me as I look to the future and prioritize what’s most important for me and my family,” she added.

Ms. Godwin, the first Black woman to run a broadcast news division, has had a rocky tenure atop ABC News.

Last year, ABC News parted ways with the “GMA3” anchors T.J. Holmes and Amy Robach, culminating a weekslong tabloid spectacle after the anchors were revealed to be romantically involved. Ms. Godwin initially kept the two on the air — only to reverse course several days later. Mr. Holmes and Ms. Robach left the network a couple of months later.

During Ms. Godwin’s tenure, senior executives at ABC News were ousted, including some who were involved with news gathering and talent relations. In February, Disney installed Ms. O’Connell above Ms. Godwin, adding an extra layer of management between Ms. Godwin and Dana Walden, co-chairman of Disney Entertainment.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates.

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