'Nightline' Anchor Cynthia McFadden Departs ABC for NBC News

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Cynthia McFadden

UPDATED: The 20-year veteran of the network will now serve as senior legal and investigative correspondent at NBC, while ABC's Juju Chang takes her "Nightline" co-anchor chair.

Cynthia McFadden is leaving her post at ABC News after 20 years. NBC News announced Thursday that the veteran journalist is switching networks, taking on a new role as NBC's senior legal and investigative correspondent.

“After 20 incredible years at ABC News I’ve decided to take on new challenges at NBC News,” said McFadden. “While it is not easy leaving the Nightline anchor chair, the opportunity NBC offered to make a deep dive into the kind of reporting I am most passionate about -- legal and investigative -- was just too appealing to resist. I’m grateful to everyone at ABC for a marvelous journey and very much looking forward to joining my new colleagues at NBC.”

McFadden's departure comes just days after boss Ben Sherwood was announced as the replacement for Anne Sweeney as president of the Disney-ABC Television Group in 2015.

“Cynthia McFadden is a rare talent -- passionate about journalism, compassionate in her view of the world, truly gifted in the art of storytelling,” said NBC News president Deborah Turness. “Expert, experienced, and exceptional -- NBC News is the perfect place for her, and I personally can't wait for us to begin our journey together.”

McFadden will remain in New York, contributing across all broadcasts and platforms in the NBC News portfolio. She has been the Nightline anchor for nine years, including the most recent one, which saw the show shift to 12:35 a.m. when ABC moved Jimmy Kimmel into the post-local news slot to be more competitive with the late-night talkers.

Effective immediately, Nightline's Juju Chang will now serve as co-anchor of the broadcast, joining Dan Harris and Dan Abrams.

She is the recipient of many accolades, including the Emmy, Peabody, duPont and Foreign Press awards.