James Goldston

President of ABC News

ByABC News
January 21, 2021, 3:56 PM
PHOTO: James Goldston, President, ABC News
James Goldston, President, ABC News
Heidi Gutman/ABC

— -- James Goldston, president of ABC News, oversees all aspects of the news division, including broadcast, streaming, digital and audio, a combined audience that is unmatched in the United States. ABC News is home to some of the most iconic and respected names in journalism and is recognized as the most trusted brand in news. He reports to Peter Rice, chairman, Disney General Entertainment Content.

During Goldston’s tenure leading ABC News, the network has responded rapidly to cover breaking news in China, Cuba, Syria, Iraq, Iran, North Korea and Venezuela and across the country. ABC News has scored exclusive interviews with President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris, former President Donald Trump, former First Lady Melania Trump, former First Lady Michelle Obama, former National Security Advisor John Bolton, Caitlyn Jenner, James Comey, Michael Jordan and Bill and Melinda Gates, among many others, and hosted landmark town halls with then-President Barack Obama and Pope Francis.

Under his leadership ABC’s newscasts are delivering their most competitive seasons in years while expanding their reach on new digital networks. “GMA” is No. 1 for the ninth straight year, and “World News Tonight with David Muir” ranks No. 1 in total viewers at this point of the season for the 5th consecutive year, delivering its most-watched season in 17 years, and closed out the most recent television season ranked No. 1 across the board for the first time in 24 years. In the past year ABC News reached over 132 million people a month and delivered over 11 billion video views on digital and social platforms. ABC News built on this success to launch a 24/7 streaming news channel, ABC News Live, in 2018. Since January 2020, an average of 20 million viewers have tuned in monthly to ABC News Live, an increase of 142% year-over-year.

Goldston was named president of ABC News in April of 2014. Since then the news division has won five Edward R. Murrow Awards for Overall Excellence and numerous other prestigious honors in journalism, including duPont, Peabody and Emmy Awards. In 2019, Goldston was the recipient of the Radio, Television and Digital News Association’s First Amendment Service Award. That same year he received an honorary fellowship from Cardiff University, awarded to individuals who have achieved outstanding recognition in their fields.

In 2018, ABC News acquired renowned data journalism organization FiveThirtyEight and announced the expansion of “Good Morning America” to a third hour. ABC’s The View, now in its 24th season,joined the news division in 2014 and now ranks at the top of all network and syndicated daytime talk shows and is delivering its most-watched season in six years.

From March 2012-April 2014, Goldston served as senior vice president for Content and Development for ABC News. In this role he oversaw ABC News programs and executive producers and led the development of new shows for broadcast, cable and other distribution.

Prior to his role as senior vice president, Goldston was the senior executive producer of “Good Morning America” from February 2011 to March 2012. During his tenure the broadcast saw significant ratings gains as it closed in on NBC’s 16-year winning streak in the mornings and covered a wide range of breaking news stories from around the world with distinction.

Goldston joined ABC News in 2004 as a senior producer of primetime specials and investigative reports and was promoted shortly thereafter to executive producer of “Nightline,” a position he held until 2011. Under his leadership the program grew to become the #1 show in late night and won a string of awards, including multiple Emmys® and the prestigious Peabody Award.

Before joining ABC News, Goldston was the executive producer of Britain’s most-watched current affairs program, ITV1’s “Tonight with Trevor McDonald,” from 2002-2004. There he produced a series of celebrated documentaries, including "Shock and Awe" – “Tonight”'s award-winning coverage of the Iraq War – and the multi-award-winning “Living with Michael Jackson.” During his tenure as both producer and executive producer, “Tonight” was honored with the Royal Television Society’s prestigious Program of the Year Award three times in five years.

Goldston began his career in television as a producer for several BBC News programs, including “Newsnight,” the network’s nightly news analysis show, as well as BBC’s flagship current affairs program “Panorama.”

A graduate of Jesus College, Oxford University, Goldston resides in New York City with his family.