In a statement, ABC News President David Westin said that Sawyer "is the right person to succeed Charlie and build on what he has accomplished. She has an outstanding and varied career in television journalism, beginning with her role as a State Department correspondent and continuing at 60 Minutes, Primetime Live, and Good Morning America.
"She has interviewed every President since President George H. W. Bush up to and including President Obama. She has handled an array of breaking news special events, including on 9/11 and, most recently, the presidential election. She has done distinguished documentaries on topics as varied as North Korea, the plight of women in Afghanistan and in prisons here at home, and poverty in Camden, New Jersey, and in Appalachia.
"We are fortunate to have a journalist of Diane's proven ability and passion to step into the important position of anchor for World News. She will continue with her documentaries in her new role.
"Diane's presence will certainly be missed on Good Morning America," the statement concluded. "But we are fortunate that both Charlie and Diane will remain with their current broadcasts for the next four months; we will be making further announcements well before any changes are made.
Sawyer now becomes the second female to anchor an evening news show. In September 2006, Katie Couric left NBC's Today show to anchor CBS Evening News. Her contract ends in 2011.