ABC’s Westin Delivers the News to Staff…

As first reported by NYT and by Politico earlier this evening, ABC News President David Westin is stepping down.

Westin said there are other things he wants to do professionally — “things that I cannot explore while fulfilling my responsibilities here.”

Read Westin’s full “Dear Colleague” announcement letter to staff after the jump…

Dear Colleague,?

A month ago I told Bob Iger and Anne Sweeney that the time has come
for me to step down as President of ABC News. Leading you has been a
great privilege and a solemn responsibility — a responsibility that I
tried to fulfill for over thirteen years by doing what I believed was
best for this important news organization. I will root for your
continued success long after I am gone.? I’ve always admired those few
who know when it’s time to move on. This is the right time for me.
Over the last nine months, we’ve put in place new anchors on all of
our programs. At the same time, we went through a very difficult
transformation made necessary by changes in our business and its
economics. I am confident ABC News is better positioned for the
future than it has been at any time since I came here in March of
1997.? As rewarding as I’ve found my time here, there are some other
things I want to do professionally — things that I cannot explore
while fulfilling my responsibilities here. I’m announcing my decision
now so that I can pursue those possibilities, something I couldn’t do
in fairness to all of you until IÂ’d told you of my plans to step down.
I have agreed to remain your leader through the end of the year to
ensure that Anne has the time she needs to find the right successor
and that there is an orderly transition. So, I’m not going anywhere
for the time being. I will need your support during this interim
period to make sure that we continue to move forward.? I have only the
highest regard for the company of which we are a part, for its
leadership, and – most important – for all of you. I am grateful for
your letting me be part of this great organization for so long.?