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NBC News Lures ‘Nightline’ Anchor Cynthia McFadden From ABC

NBC News said Thursday it had hired Cynthia McFadden, who leaves ABC News after a stint there lasting 20 years.

McFadden was named senior legal and investigative correspondent for the NBCUniversal unit by Deborah Turness, the executive who took the reins of NBC News last year.  Based in New York, McFadden will join NBC News’ investigative unit and will contribute across all broadcasts and platforms,according to a statement.

She has served as a co-anchor of “Nightline” for the past nine years, taking one of three co-anchor spots when the venerable show was revamped followed the departure of its original host, Ted Koppel. In 2013, ABC pushed the program’s start time back to 12:35 a.m. in order to give Jimmy Kimmel’s late-night talk show an earlier berth and a chance to win more dollars from advertisers. ABC recently announced it would give “Nightline a primetime run on Saturday nights.

ABC News said “Nightline” correspondent Juju Chang would fill the co-anchor spot vacated by McFadden.

McFadden joined ABC in 1994 as a legal correspondent. At the network, she developed a reputation for tackling complex investigative stores, as well as stories about children. She has won a George Foster Peabody Award, an Overeas Press Club Award, among other journalism prizes. Before coming to ABC News, McFadden was an anchor and senior producer at the Courtroom Television Network, beginning with the network’s inception in 1991. She anchored live coverage of more than 200 trials. From 1984 to 1991, she was the executive producer of Fred Friendly’s Media and Society seminars based at Columbia University.

Chang has been with ABC News her entire career, starting as a desk assistant , then becoming  a producer at “World News Tonight.” She rose to become a correspondent covering such stories as the U.S. Embassy bombings in Kenya, Hurricane Georges, and the anniversary of the Chernobyl nuclear accident. Chang was based in Washington, DC from 1996 to1997, where she covered the White House, Capitol Hill and the 1996 presidential election for NewsOne, ABC’s affiliate service. Prior to her assignment in Washington, Chang was a reporter for KGO-TV in San Francisco, from 1995 to 1996.

“Cynthia has been an amazing colleague, a loyal mentor to so many of our up and coming producers and I am personally grateful for her profound contributions to ABC News,” said ABC News President Ben Sherwood in a memo to staffers.” It is with great fondness that I wish Cynthia the very best in her new adventure.”
 

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