ABC’s ‘Historic’ Diversity Hire Out Of Top Spot Amid Rumors Her Incompetence Shocked Higher Ups

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Nicole Silverio Media Reporter
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ABC News President Kim Godwin stepped down Sunday night following an investigation into her management of her network.

The overseer of the network, Debra O’Connell, opened a corporate investigation into Godwin and other senior executives over the growing frustration among staffers, vacant top positions and the drop in ratings at its prominent program, “Good Morning America.” Several people alleged Godwin dedicated more time to her profile than creating success in the news division, and that her mismanagement “shocked” O’Connell, WSJ reported.

“I have decided to retire from broadcast journalism,” Godwin said in an email to staff Sunday night, according to WSJ. “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. But after considerable reflection, 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.”

Her note added ABC News continues to be “No. 1” and that she is leaving “with [her] head held high and wish the entire team continued success,” according to WSJ.

Staffers have reportedly been appalled by Godwin’s leadership style and the several vacant seats of key positions, CNN reported Friday. Prominent people, including its former head of talent Galen Gordon and its previous Washington bureau chief Jonathan Greenberger, left ABC News under her leadership.

Several executives were laid off in March 2023, reportedly causing “shock” throughout the newsroom. Godwin told her staff the downsizing was a “difficult time” for the entire network, but vowed they were on a “solid footing.” (RELATED: ABC News To Host Republican Debate Days Before CNN)

Liberals celebrated Godwin’s hiring to ABC News in January 2021 for being a black woman, with many failing to also celebrate her skills. She touted her background as being a single mother and being raised as such when she introduced herself to her new staff at the time, according to the Hollywood Reporter.

O’Connell became the president of parent company Disney’s news division following a restructuring of the network in February, according to WSJ. Her power to oversee the network appeared to be a demotion for Godwin, who replaced her in leading editorial meetings and becoming increasingly hands on in the newsroom.

She thanked Godwin for using her “respect for the brand and division” while having “navigated this team through consequential times in our world,” according to WSJ.

Her defenders alleged Godwin is treated with more scrutiny than other executives due to her race, according to WSJ. ABC News’ Chief Washington correspondent Jonathan Karl said Godwin is a “crazy workaholic” and the allegations against her “certainly does not reflect the reality of who she is.”