ABC News' flagship show is getting a new captain.
The network announced Thursday that Jon Banner, who has been the executive producer of "ABC World News" for eight years, is assuming a broader brief at ABC News. Banner will become an executive producer overseeing division wide projects.
Michael Corn, a senior producer on "World News," will replace him at the helm of the Diane Sawyer-anchored broadcast.
Banner presided over "World News" during a period of considerable tragedy and instability. He was at the helm when Peter Jennings died of cancer and when Bob Woodruff was critically injured in Iraq, as well as when Charles Gibson left the program after a little over three years.
ABC News president Ben Sherwood announced the move in an email to staff. Below, read the text of the email:
I'm writing to share important news about our flagship early evening broadcast.
After eight successful and eventful years at the helm of World News, Jon Banner is taking on a new and vital role. Jon will serve as Senior Executive Producer responsible for division wide initiatives, reporting to me and bringing his great intelligence and intensity to some of our most important special projects.
Given Jon's deep relationships across the company, his formidable knowledge of the news business and his can-do spirit, he will be a bulldozer in our drive to unite this organization with a common voice and mission. Jon will also continue as a leader for our 2012 political coverage and special events.
For years, Jon has been one of the rocks of ABC News, helping to hold the division together during the twin traumas of Peter's death and Bob's wounding in Iraq. Since 2003 when Jon took the reins of World News, the broadcast has been recognized repeatedly for its excellence with more than a dozen Emmy awards, two Peabody Awards, a George Polk award and numerous Edward R. Murrow awards including back to back prizes for Best Newscast. On a personal note, Jon has been a friend for years and a trusted advisor over the past nine months. I am grateful he is taking on this new challenge and look forward to working very closely with him.
I'm also delighted to report that Michael Corn - one of the highest impact players at ABC News - will succeed Jon as Executive Producer of World News. As Senior Producer of the broadcast, Michael has helped lead our coverage of breaking news events around the world, from the West Virginia mine disaster to the Gulf oil spill to all of the historic events this year.
I came to know Michael well during my tenure at Good Morning America - we worked closely at all hours of the day and night - and I am confident that his energy, creativity, competitive zeal and news judgment will lead the program to new heights.
Through extraordinary times, Jon has been a warrior for ABC News. He hands over the program at an exciting moment of growth, opportunity, editorial excellence and momentum.
Please join me in thanking Jon and congratulating him on his new leadership role.
I know that all of you will give Michael your full support and wish him the best in this exciting new assignment.