Diane Sawyer Is Leaving 'World News' & Her Replacement Is Not a Woman
After five years of anchoring the desk at ABC's World News, legendary journalist Diane Sawyer is stepping down — but she's not leaving the network. In a press statement released on Wednesday, Sawyer said: "After wonderful years at World News I decided it is time to move to a new full time role at ABC News." So we don't have to say goodbye to her just yet, thank goodness, but who's replacing Sawyer at World News? Unfortunately, it's two white men. David Muir, a weekend anchor at World News, is being promoted to anchor and managing editor of World News while George Stephanopoulos is being promoted to Chief Anchor at ABC News, while continuing his post on Good Morning America.
Essentially, it takes two men to replace the work of one extraordinary woman. You go, Diane.
The news bodes well for Sawyer, who will take on more of a leadership role at ABC — she'll take the lead on "new programming tackling big issues and extraordinary interviews." Whether that means more in-depth reporting or more hard-hitting interviews, it definitely means more power for Sawyer at the network, and in a landscape quite lacking in female journalists, this is a great development.
While Muir and Stephanopoulos surely have the experience to take on World News as its new team, it's truly disappointing that the network did not consider another woman to fulfill Sawyer's former role. It's not to say that Muir and Stephanopoulos are unfit for the job — quite the opposite — it's just disappointing to lose such a force in Sawyer and have her replacements be more of the same faces we see on nightly news every evening.
If ABC was going to mine Good Morning America for Sawyer's replacement, they could have done well to choose Robin Roberts; it would have been especially refreshing to see an African-American woman at the helm of a primetime news show. And in my dreams, Rachel Maddow would leave MSNBC and take Sawyer's spot, but that's just a far reaching fantasy.
Congratulations are in order for Sawyer, who will presumably have more creative pull at ABC now, and to Muir and Stephanopoulos as well — but they have big shoes to fill. But can we get another female anchor? Please?