ABC-owned KABC-TV (“ABC7”) has named Pam Chen to serve as the station’s vice president and news director. The move makes Chen the first Asian American news department head at a network-owned station in Los Angeles.

Chen replaces Rob Elmore, who had headed up KABC’s news operations since 2015. Elmore was recently tapped to take over as president and general manager of ABC’s WTVD in Raleigh-Durham, N.C.

Chen has been with KABC for 15 years, most recently as assistant news director. She reports to KABC president and general manager Cheryl Fair, to whom she’ll report.

“Pam Chen is an innovative journalist, producer, mentor and leader at KABC, equally and fiercely dedicated to both the success of Eyewitness News and the people in the newsroom that she works with daily,” Fair said. “Pam shows that hard work, character, compassion and commitment are the ingredients for success. I am confident in her leadership and look forward to what is to come.”

Chen will oversee KABC’s Eyewitness News brand and team in her new role. “It’s an absolute honor to be entrusted to lead this newsroom,” Chen said. “The Eyewitness News team is comprised of world-class individuals that I’ve been working side-by-side and collaborating with throughout my 15 years at KABC. I am looking forward to leading this remarkable team as we continue to strengthen the connections to our local communities across Southern California through high-impact hyperlocal and relevant storytelling.”

Chen first joined KABC as morning producer of the station’s 5 a.m. newscast, later moving to the 4 p.m. and 5 p.m. news. She also helped launch and syndicate KABC’s “On the Red Carpet,” which chronicled major Hollywood events such as the Oscars. Later, she helped launch a 3 p.m. newscast and implement a new operating and editing system for the station’s newsroom.

As assistant news director, Chen launched a community journalist program at the station and led the news organization to three regional Edward R. Murrow Awards by the Radio Television Digital News Association for news coverage.