Tom Llamas Left 'World News Tonight' for a Weeknight Position at NBC

Longtime ABC anchor Tom Llamas announced in January that he was leaving ABC News. Why did he leave and who took his place on 'World News Tonight'?

Sara Belcher - Author

May 13 2021, Published 4:50 p.m. ET

Tom Llamas
Source: Instagram

ABC's World News Tonight is one of the most watched evening newscasts on air right now. The weeknight editions are hosted by award-winning journalist David Muir, and up until recently, the weekend editions were hosted by Tom Llamas.

Tom had long been the face of the weekend casts, but announced, seemingly suddenly, that he was leaving the network. This shocked many of the show's viewers. Why did Tom leave ABC News, and who replaced him?

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Tom Llamas left ABC News in January.

At the end of January, Tom announced during a weekend episode of World News Tonight that it would be his last newscast as an anchor for the network and said farewell to his viewers.

“This will be my last broadcast at ABC News,” the chief national affairs correspondent said during the broadcast. “So first, thank you. Over the years it has been a pleasure spending the weekends together.”

Tom Llamas and Linsey David on ABC News
Source: Instagram
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“It has been an honor to work here. I am the son of immigrants, and because of that, I have never taken for granted the opportunity or the responsibility to sit at this desk and bring you the truth,” he continued.

While the anchor had been with ABC since 2014, it looks like he decided to leave the network to pursue a more primetime position.

At the time of his departure, Tom did not announce his next career move, though it was rumored he was moving to NBC. At the end of April, it was announced that he had taken the position of senior national correspondent for NBC News. Tom now anchors the primetime newscast for the network and contributes to Today and NBC Nightly News.

Tom previously worked as a reporter for NBC in 2000 before becoming a political campaign reporter for MSNBC.

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“Tom brings with him more than two decades of experience tenaciously covering the news across multiple platforms and for many different audiences,” said NBC News president Noah Oppenheim in a statement to Deadline. “Our viewers expect us to bring them smart and trustworthy journalism, wherever they are, and we’re thrilled that Tom will be bringing his expertise and passion to NBC News, NBC News Now and beyond.” 

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Who replaced Tom Llamas on 'World News Tonight'?

Following Tom's departure from the network, ABC announced two new anchors for World News Tonight. Linsey Davis took Tom's usual Sunday night slot, while Whit Johnson took the Saturday night cast.

“Linsey and Whit are both familiar faces at the World News Tonight desk, having filled in on the weekends and for David [Muir] during the week,” ABC News president James Goldston said, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

Linsey is an Emmy-winning journalist who was previously an anchor for the outlet's first-ever streaming-exclusive newscast, ABC News Live Prime. Whit is also the co-anchor for the weekend editions of Good Morning America. 

The pair have been hosting the weekend edition of World News Tonight since February.

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