Jennings also led ABC's coverage of the Sept. 11 attacks and America's subsequent war on terrorism. He anchored more than 60 hours that week during the network's longest continuous period of news coverage, and was widely praised for providing a reassuring voice during the time of crisis. TV Guide called him "the center of gravity," while the Washington Post wrote, "Jennings, in his shirt sleeves, did a Herculean job of coverage." The coverage earned ABC News Peabody and duPont awards.
Jennings joined ABC News on Aug. 3, 1964. He served as the anchor of "Peter Jennings with the News" from 1965 to 1967.
He established the first American television news bureau in the Arab world in 1968 when he served as ABC News' bureau chief for Beirut, Lebanon, a position he held for seven years. He helped put ABC News on the map in 1972 with his coverage of the Summer Olympics in Munich, when Arab terrorists took Israeli athletes hostage.
In 1975, Jennings moved to Washington to become the news anchor of ABC's morning program "A.M. America". After a short stint in the mornings, Jennings returned overseas to Rome where he stayed before moving to London to become ABC's Chief Foreign Correspondent. In 1978 he was named the foreign desk anchor for "World News Tonight." He co-anchored the program with Frank Reynolds in Washington, D.C., and Max Robinson in Chicago until 1983.
Jennings was named anchor and senior editor of "World News Tonight" in 1983. In his more than 20 years in the position he was honored with almost every major award given to television journalists.
His extensive domestic and overseas reporting experience was evident in "World News Tonight's" coverage of major crises. He reported from all 50 states and locations around the globe. During the 1991 Gulf War and the 2003 War in Iraq, his knowledge of Middle Eastern affairs brought invaluable perspective to ABC News' coverage of the war in Iraq and the drug trade in Central and South America.
The series also tackled important domestic issues such as gun control policy, the politics of abortion, the crisis in funding for the arts and a highly praised chronicle of the accused bombers of Oklahoma City. "Peter Jennings Reporting" earned numerous awards, including the 2004 Edward R. Murrow award for best documentary for "The Kennedy Assassination -- Beyond Conspiracy."
Jennings also had a particular interest in broadcasting for the next generation. He did numerous live news specials for children on subjects ranging from growing up in the age of AIDS, to prejudice and its effects on our society. After the events of September 11, and again on the first anniversary, he anchored a town hall meeting for children and parents titled, "Answering Children's Questions."
Jennings was honored with many awards for news reporting, including 16 Emmys, two George Foster Peabody Awards, several Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Awards and several Overseas Press Club Awards. Most recently, "World News Tonight" was recognized with two consecutive Edward R. Murrow awards for best newscast, based on field reporting done by Jennings on the California wildfires and the transfer of power in Iraq.
Jennings was the author, with Todd Brewster, of the acclaimed New York Times best seller, "The Century." It featured first-person accounts of the great events of the century. In 1999, he anchored the 12-hour ABC series, "The Century," and ABC's series for The History Channel, "America's Time." He and Brewster also published "In Search of America," a companion book for the six-part ABC News series.