Barbara Walters will have a permanent place at ABC News Headquarters — not just because of her history-making career in broadcast journalism, but because her name is on the building.
Walters was honored in a special ceremony today, in which the ABC News building, located at 47 West 66th Street in New York City, was named “The Barbara Walters Building” in her honor.
“I am so truly touched by this,” Walters said at the ceremony. “I want to make something very clear, that each and every one of you from the desk assistants to the producers to the correspondents and anchors, each of you who walk through these doors every day, yeah, my name is going to be on this building, but the building belongs to you.”
Though Walters called the dedication a “huge honor,” she said her true legacy was the opportunities she helped create for women in media.
“People ask me very often, ‘what is your legacy,’ and it’s not the interviews with presidents, or heads of state, nor celebrities,” Walters said. “If I have a legacy, and I’ve said this before and I mean it so sincerely, I hope that I played a small role in paving the way for so many of you fabulous women.”
By her side during the ceremony were several ABC News anchors, including Robin Roberts, Diane Sawyer and George Stephanopoulos, correspondents and production staff, as well as ABC News President James Goldston; Disney/ABC News Television Group Co-President Ben Sherwood; Anne Sweeney, co-chair of Disney Media Networks and president of Disney/ABC Television Group, and The Walt Disney Company chairman and CEO Bob Iger.
“Of all the people I’ve been proud to work with, Barbara Walters will always be at the top of my list,” Iger said during his remarks. “It’s the quality of a person that gets a name put on a building, not just the contributions and the accomplishments. So Barbara, while the magnitude of your career is breathtaking, and your achievements are unrivaled and will probably never quite be equaled by anyone who follows you, you are truly a remarkable person.”
The building naming ceremony is just one of many celebrations of Walters’ award-winning 50-year career this week.
A trailblazer in broadcast journalism, Walters was the first woman to co-anchor network morning and evening broadcasts. Since coming to ABC News in 1976, Walters has interviewed dictators, pop culture icons and every president and first lady since Richard Nixon.
Walters is stepping down as co-host of “The View,” a daytime talk show program she created.
Her final appearance as a co-host on the “The View” aired Friday. Watch ABC’s two-hour special highlighting her life and career here.
Walters will continue to be the executive producer of “The View,” and will remain a lifelong member of ABC News, contributing reports as news warrants.