Sam Champion is leaving ABC for The Weather Channel. The longtime weatherman of "Good Morning America" has announced that he will resign from his post on the morning show to take a role as managing editor and host of a new morning show on the cable channel owned as a joint venture between NBCUniversal, Blackstone Group and Bain Capital.
"This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for me to do what I love most at a network that lives and breathes the weather," he said. He also tweeted on Monday, December 2, "Only an amazing opportunity like this at @weatherchannel cld take me away from my @ABC family of 25 yrs and @GMA #blessedlife."
In an e-mail to employees announcing Champion's departure, ABC News president Ben Sherwood stated, "Over the years at GMA, Sam has broadcast more than 1,800 weather forecasts. He has traveled to almost every major weather event in the U.S. As many of you know, Sam's 'Go' bag is always ready and his stellar reporting during Superstorm Sandy contributed to ABC's Peabody Award for coverage of that historic storm."
"Sam has broadcast live from a raft floating between polar icebergs, danced the salsa on Despierta America and interviewed countless newsmakers, celebrities and chefs. On his show Sea Rescue, viewers have shared Sam's passion for marine animal rescue, rehabilitation and release."
The Weather Channel president David Clark added, "Sam is already one of the top names in morning television, as well as one of the country's most respected and trusted weather reporters. He will add a great deal to our network and be a great addition to our already proven and stellar team of talented weather professionals."
"With his commitment to understanding, predicting and explaining the power of weather in our lives, Sam perfectly embodies The Weather Channel's brand philosophy, 'It's Amazing Out There.' "
Champion, who has been part of ABC News since 1988 and joined "GMA" in 2006, will make his last appearance on the morning show on Wednesday. Meteorologist Ginger Zee, who has frequently filled in for Champion on "GMA", will replace him.