First on TVNewser: Sam Champion, weatherman for ABC’s “Good Morning America” is leaving ABC and joining the Weather Channel. It’s the first talent departure at the No. 1 morning show in more than two years.
Champion, an ABC veteran, has been “Good Morning America’s” weather anchor since 2006. He joined ABC 25 years ago as weather anchor for WABC in New York.
Champion will be the face of the Weather Channel and also be the network’s managing editor. Beginning in the New Year, he’ll anchor a morning show that on many days will be hosted remotely.
“This is such an exciting opportunity,” Champion tells TVNewser. “It’s a dream job for a weather junky like me.”
Champion will be back on the show tomorrow morning and will sign off on Wednesday. “Robin, George, Lara and Josh are the best friends and colleagues you could hope for,” Champion adds. “I’ll always cherish the two and a half decades at ABC.”
The Weather Channel is part-owned by NBCUniversal, so don’t be surprised if you see Champion turn up on NBC News programs from time to time. He’ll also continue to host “Sea Rescue,” a weekly syndicated educational and informational program.
As Champion says goodbye, TVNewser has learned Robin Roberts is close to signing a deal to stay with ABC News.
> More: ABC News president Ben Sherwood‘s note to staff, and the Weather Channel release after the jump.