CNN president Jim Walton to step down

By Justine Espersen

Time Warner announced Friday that CNN chief Jim would be leaving the company at the end of the year.

Walton, 54, who originally joined the company in 1981 as a video journalist said in an email to his CNN colleagues, “CNN needs new thinking…a new leader who brings a different perspective, different experiences and a new plan…and I’m ready for a change.”

For a second quarter, CNN’s U.S. network had its lowest ratings, down 40 percent for some of its prime-time shows, according to the Associated Press.
Additionally, the network inaccurately reported on the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling on President Obama’s health care law.

Despite CNN’s recent low ratings and their incorrect reporting incident, Walton is associated with CNN’s expansion worldwide on television, digital and mobile platforms.

“When Jim Walton assumed the presidency of CNN in 2003, it was under performing and earnings were in serious decline,” Time Warner CEO and Chairman Jeff Bewkes said in a statement. “Since then, he and CNN have tripled earnings, doubled margin and delivered annual growth of 15 percent.”

A CNN spokeswoman told the New York Times the President of Turner Broadcasting, Phil Kent, will be leading a search for CNN’s new worldwide president.

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