NEW YORK (AP) ― Katie Couric is leaving her anchor post at “CBS Evening News” less than five years after becoming the first woman to solely helm a network TV evening newscast.
A network executive, who spoke on condition of anonymity because Couric has not officially announced her plans, reported the move to The Associated Press on Sunday night. The 54-year-old anchor is expected to launch a syndicated talk show in 2012 and several companies are vying for her services.
Couric’s move from NBC’s “Today” show was big news in 2006, and she began in the anchor chair with a flourish that September. She tried to incorporate her strengths as an interviewer into a standard evening news format and millions of people who normally didn’t watch the news at night checked it out. But they drifted away and the evening newscast reverted to a more traditional broadcast.
After those first few weeks, the “CBS Evening News” settled into third place in the ratings and is well behind leader Brian Williams at NBC’s “Nightly News” and second-place Diane Sawyer at ABC’s “World News.”
No departure date has been set for Couric. Her CBS News contract expires on June 4.
“We’re having ongoing discussions with Katie Couric,” said CBS News spokeswoman Sonya McNair on Sunday.