Diane Sawyer, who was the second woman to serve as the sole anchor of a broadcast network newscast, is stepping down from that role at ABC World News. According to TV Newser the network announced Sawyer’s move Tuesday and he will be replaced by “World News” weekend edition anchor David Muir.
Sawyer is not leaving ABC entirely. She will continue to produce specials and high-profile interviews for the network. TVNewser reported Sawyer “began talking with former ABC News president Ben Sherwood late last year about a transition from the anchor desk.” Barbara Walters’ retirement earlier this year allowed her to take over some of the specials and interviews that had been Walters’ stock in trade.
Sawyer began anchoring “ABC World News” in 2009, which made her the second woman to lead a network news broadcast after Katie Couric’s stint at “NBC Nightly News.” TVNewser noted “ABC World News” beat “NBC Nightly News” in the key demographic during this year’s crucial May sweeps ratings period for the first time in six years. In spite of this, “NBC Nightly News” remains the leading network newscast. However, on Tuesday, ABC announced “World News” has cut “Nightly News'” lead for three straight seasons.
A spokesperson for ABC News did not respond to a request for comment from Business Insider about Sawyer’s departure Tuesday.
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