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Phyllis McGrady To Leave Fulltime Role at ABC News

McGrady_7.20.jpgVeteran ABC News producer and executive Phyllis McGrady is leaving the network early next year and will become a consultant for ABC News.

The announcement was made by ABC News president David Westin this afternoon.

“Phyllis came to me several weeks ago, saying that she felt it was time for her to change her life a bit,” Westin writes. “There are other things she wants to do in addition to making the contributions she does here.”

McGrady joined ABC in 1977 as a writer and field producer for “Good Morning America.” She went on to become EP of the show in 1984, when it was the #1 breakfast show. She also co-created the newsmagazines “Primetime Live” and “Turning Point.” In 2000, McGrady was named SVP of Early Morning, Primetime and News Program Development, overseeing “Good Morning America,” “20/20,” “Primetime Live,” “Peter Jennings Reporting” specials, and the John Stossel specials. Since 2007 she’s been SVP of Creative Development responsible for developing programs for ABC’s TV and digital news outlets including this summer’s “Boston Med.”

I his note to staff, Westin writes, “Phyllis is not leaving and she’s not retiring. She and I will spend a bit of time figuring out who should take over some of her current responsibilities.”

The note, after the jump…


From: Westin, David L.
Sent: Tuesday, July 20, 2010 3:12 PM
To: #ABCTV News ALL
Cc: Sweeney, Anne X.
Subject: Phyllis McGrady

After more than 30 years devoting her every waking moment to ABC and ABC News, Phyllis McGrady has decided to change her relationship with us early next Spring. After taking some time off, Phyllis will transition to a consultant with ABC News next May, working about 40% of her time with us on developing new programs for ABC News and the ABC Television Network. Phyllis came to me several weeks ago, saying that she felt it was time for her to change her life a bit. There are other things she wants to do in addition to making the contributions she does here. Both of us wanted to make sure that, even as she dials back, we continue the strong ties Phyllis has had to ABC News for so many years.

Phyllis is not leaving and she’s not retiring. She and I will spend a bit of time figuring out who should take over some of her current responsibilities. Now is not the time to go through all of her many contributions and accomplishments during her remarkable career. But, as we look forward to the next chapter, it doesn’t hurt to remember that she ran a first-place “Good Morning America” very early in her career, she co-created “Primetime Live” and created “Turning Point,” she agreed to come back and save “GMA” in 1998 when we needed her most, she was the creative heart of “ABC 2000,” and she oversaw so many of the great documentaries that have distinguished ABC News through the years.

I look forward to working with Phyllis in her new role – and to the wonderful news programs she will continue to create for us.

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