CNN recruits from ABC for US chief

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LONDON -- The CNN News Group, which claims to be the largest and most profitable electronic news and information company in the world, has appointed Richard Kaplan, the award-winning ABC News executive, as president of CNN/USA, a newly- created post. The U.S. news network CNN/USA is the group's flagship network.

The move is part of an overhaul of the CNN News Group in which presidents of each of the six networks have been created, bringing with them editorial responsiblity for each network.

The changes promote Eason Jordan from executive vice president to president of CNN International, CNN en Espanol and global newsgathering, including CNN's 32 bureaux worldwide; Lou Dobbs to president of CNNfn, the financial news network, Bob Furnad to president of Headline News, claimed to be the No. 2 TV news network in the U.S. and Jim Walton to president of CNN/SI, the 24-hour sports news network. Also, Chris Cramer, appointed senior vice president of CNN International in July, is now promoted to executive vice president. They all report to Johnson.

"Our leadership in global television news has included the rapid growth of all six of our news networks, as well as our splendid Internet services, two radio networks, a broadcast affiliate service serving 600 U.S. and international affiliates and our private networks," says Johnson. "This reorganization and the elevation of the network heads to the rank of president assure the acceleration of the unprecedented growth of our distinct news services, each with different target audiences and programming demands."

Kaplan has worked for ABC and CBS News for 28 years. He most recently worked as executive producer of special projects for the ABC Television Network, creating and producing special programming for all the network's divisions. Before joining ABC in 1979, he was a producer for "The CBS Evening News with Walter Cronkite".

Copyright August 1997, Crain Communications Inc.

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