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Company-Wide Layoffs at Disney Hit ABC News Execs

Company-Wide Layoffs at Disney Hit ABC News Execs ABC

Reports surfaced Thursday morning that The Walt Disney Company’s planned layoffs have started to hit the News division of ABC.

According to an article in The Hollywood Reporter, the ABC News has already “laid off approximately 50 people as part of the company’s planned cuts, with ABC News president Kim Godwin reorganizing her senior leadership team.”

Back in February, CEO Bob Iger said that 7,000 jobs would be cut, and this is the first week of those layoffs. A larger round of layoffs is coming in April with more hitting prior to the start of summer.

Thursday morning, Godwin sent a memo to staff noting the changes and her plans for restructuring the team going forward. The full memo is below.


Throughout the company, teams are being impacted by the downsizing that was announced several weeks ago, including our own ABC News family. While these actions are never easy, they are a necessary step to ensure we’re on solid footing for the years ahead as we chart a sustainable, growth-oriented path forward for the entire organization.

While this is a difficult time for all of us – particularly those directly affected by these tough decisions – it’s important to remember that together, we are resilient, and will emerge from this period of transition stronger than before.

To that end, I’d like to share some key changes to our structure:

  • Katie den Daas, who has been leading our London bureau, will now be vice president of Newsgathering, overseeing the domestic and international teams, including bureaus worldwide, the desks, and NewsOne. Reporting into Katie will be Michael Kreisel, who will manage the domestic bureau chiefs (except for the DC bureau) and NewsOne, which will continue to be headed by Al Prieto; Jonathan Greenberger, who will lead the DC bureau and political coverage; and Kirit Radia, who will oversee the London bureau, all other international bureaus and teams worldwide. In the coming weeks, Katie will transition from London to New York, and we will name a new London bureau chief soon.
  • Effective immediately, our Business and Operations team will expand to include Talent Strategy, Production Operations, Business Operations and Business Affairs. All will report to Derek Medina, EVP, ABC News.
  • Our investigative and enterprise reporting units, which include Medical, Business, and Climate, will join the linear shows and Special Events, reporting to Stacia Deshishku, executive editor and SVP of News. Additionally, ABC’s extensive bookings resources will now roll up to Stacia.

Like you, I have come to trust and rely on the expertise and dedication of Katie, Derek, and Stacia, and I am grateful to count them among my senior leaders. All other reporting lines will remain the same.

In the coming days and weeks, we will share additional information about these teams and our plans.

Most importantly, I would like to acknowledge the work and legacy of our departing staff members. Not only are they our colleagues, they’re also our friends who will always be a part of the proud history of this esteemed organization. On behalf of the entire ABC News family, thank you for your service and professionalism.

We are truly privileged to work alongside so many smart, talented, and creative people. This is a team like no other – and it’s because of you that ABC News is #1.

ABC News president Kim Godwin

Senior Editor for the DIS and DCL Fan | Disney Vacation Club Member | Thrilled to have been a '13/'14 Disney Parks Moms Panelist (now planDisney) | Lover of all things Disney; the Magic of Disneyland, Walt Disney World, and Disney Cruise Line | ºoº


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