David Westin is the principal of Witherbee Holdings, LLC, and the author of Exit Interview, the story of what went on behind the scenes at ABC News during the 14 years he was president, covering stories from the death of Princess Diana to the impeachment of a president to the tie election of 2000 to 9/11 and the wars in Afghanistan and New York.
Westin currently advises companies on digital and media issues. He was President & CEO of NewsRight, which he helped found in 2011 with the support of the AP and 28 news company investors, including the Associated Press, the New York Times, the Washington Post, Hearst, and Germany’s Axel Springer.
From 1997 through the end of 2010, Westin was President of ABC News. During that time, he oversaw coverage of President Clinton’s impeachment, the 2000 election, the 9/11 attacks, wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, and the economic crisis of 2008. At the same time, the television news industry was undergoing fundamental change, with the advent of Fox News and MSNBC and the explosive growth of the Internet. Under his direction, ABC News launched its website, ABCNews.com; started the first live, streaming 24-hour news service, ABC News Now; and transformed the ways that it collected, produced, and reported the news through extensive use of digital technology. During Westin’s tenure, ABC News earned 11 George Foster Peabody Awards, 13 Alfred I. DuPont Awards, four George Polk Awards, more than 40 News & Documentary Emmys, and more than 40 Edward R. Murrow Awards.
Before taking the helm at ABC News, Westin was President of the ABC Television Network and General Counsel of the parent company, Capital Cities/ABC. He was a partner and associate at Wilmer, Cutler & Pickering in Washington and, immediately after law school, clerked for J. Edward Lumbard on the Second Circuit and for Lewis F. Powell on the Supreme Court. He serves on the boards of the Newseum, Save the Children, and the City University of New York Journalism School. A native of Michigan, Westin is married to Sherrie and has five children, Victoria, Elizabeth, Matthew, Lily, and David Palmer.