Ben Sherwood is preparing to leave the Walt Disney Co. after Disney completes its acquisition of 21st Century Fox.Sherwood, who has served as Disney's top TV executive as president of Disney/ABC Television Group and co-chair of the Media Networks division, had been considering options for a new role during the past two months after it became clear that Fox’s Peter Rice is poised to take on his duties as leader of Disney’s TV operations, with the exception of ESPN. Disney chief...
Ben Sherwood didn’t start out as the big cheese at the Mouse house. The former journalist entered the television industry as an investigative associate producer with ABC News’ “Prime Time Live,” departed for NBC and returned to ABC in 2004 to executive produce “Good Morning America,” which became the No. 1 morning news program.
Elevated to president of ABC News in 2010, Sherwood’s ability to broker innovative deals, including a partnership with Yahoo that strengthened ABC News’ online presence, made him a prime choice for his position where he continued to explore the viability of new platforms and opportunities that expanded the company’s reach globally and digitally. As co-chair of Disney Media Networks and president of Disney-ABC Television Group, Sherwood’s responsibilities also included oversight of cable network Freeform (formerly ABC Family), and the company’s equity interest in A+E Networks, Fusion, and Hulu. He’s credited with helping lure “Lost” co-showrunner Carlton Cuse back to ABC Studios.
“Like you, we believe the potential of video is great and growing. We know that by 2020 there will be 6 billion smartphones. We know that 4.2 billion people will be connected to the internet and we look forward to seizing that opportunity,” Sherwood told Variety in 2016.
Sherwood graduated from Harvard as a Phi Beta Kappa, then went on to study at Oxford as a Rhodes Scholar, earning master’s degrees in British imperial history and development economics. He stepped down from DATG following the Disney-Fox merger in 2019.