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Ben Sherwood

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Ben Sherwood
Sherwood in 2004
Benjamin Berkley Sherwood

(1964-02-12) February 12, 1964 (age 57)
EducationHarvard University (BA)
Magdalen College, Oxford (MSt, MS)
OccupationAuthor, journalist, entrepreneur
TitlePresident, ABC News
PredecessorDavid Westin[1]
SuccessorJames Goldston[1]
Spouse(s)Karen Kehela (m. 2003)
FamilyElizabeth Sherwood-Randall (sister)
WebsiteOfficial website

Benjamin Berkley "Ben" Sherwood (born February 12, 1964) is an American writer, journalist, and producer who was formerly the President of Disney-ABC Television Group and ABC News.

Early life and education

Sherwood was born to a wealthy Jewish family in Los Angeles, California.[2] His mother, Dorothy Lipsey Romonek, was a trustee of the California Institute of the Arts. His father, Richard E. Sherwood, was a partner in a Los Angeles law firm, and long time leader of the American Jewish Committee.[3][4][5][6]

In 1981, Sherwood graduated from Harvard-Westlake School),[7] (at the time, known as Harvard School for Boys), an independent university preparatory school in Los Angeles, California. In 1986, he graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Harvard College with an AB degree. From 1986-89, Sherwood was a Rhodes Scholar at Magdalen College, Oxford, and he and his sister, Elizabeth Sherwood-Randall, were the first brother and sister pair of Rhodes scholars.[3][5]


Television journalism

From 1989-93, Sherwood was an Associate Producer and a Producer for ABC News' Primetime (then called PrimeTime Live) with hosts Diane Sawyer and Sam Donaldson. During that time, Sherwood was part of the ABC News Team that came under sniper fire in Sarajevo, Bosnia in August 1992.[citation needed]

In 1997, Sherwood joined NBC's Nightly News with Tom Brokaw as a Producer, a Senior Producer, and ultimately the Senior Broadcast Producer, where he was present during coverage of the September 11 attacks. Sherwood left NBC News in January 2002.[citation needed]

In April 2004, Sherwood was the Executive Producer of the ABC's Good Morning America, and on December 3, 2010, Sherwood was appointed President of ABC News in New York.[8]

In January 2015, Sherwood was named President of Disney-ABC Television Group, and Co-Chairman of Disney Media Networks.[9] Following the Disney acquisition of Fox in March 2019, Sherwood departed the company.[10]


Sherwood’s non-fiction work has been published in The New York Times, The Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Newsweek, Parade Magazine, and O Magazine. In 1996, Sherwood wrote his first novel, Red Mercury, published under the pseudonym Max Barclay by Dove Books. The story involves a nuclear terror threat at the Summer Olympic Games in Atlanta, Georgia. President Bill Clinton reportedly "devoured" the book before traveling to Atlanta to attend the Olympics.[11]

In 2000, while working at NBC Nightly News, Sherwood wrote a bestselling novel called The Man Who Ate The 747, published by Bantam Books. The tragicomic tale tells the story of an investigator for a fictional Guinness Book of Records who travels to Superior, Nebraska to authenticate a record attempt involving a man eating a Boeing 747. The record keeper meets an introverted and misguided Nebraska farmer who is ingesting the 747 by grinding parts of the plane into gritty dust. By consuming the plane, the farmer hopes to prove the size and scope of his love for a woman who lives in the small town.[citation needed]

In 2004, Sherwood published The Death and Life of Charlie St. Cloud, which follows a young man's journey between the worlds of life and death, and explores his bonds with loved ones in both. The Death and Life of Charlie St. Cloud was made into a major motion picture starring Zac Efron, directed by Burr Steers,[12] produced by Marc E. Platt and released from Universal Pictures on July 30, 2010 under the new title Charlie St. Cloud.[13]

In January 2009, his first non-fiction book, The Survivors Club: The Secrets and Science that Could Save Your Life, was published by Grand Central Publishing, an imprint of Hachette Book Group. The Survivors Club explores human survival in all its forms. The book became a New York Times bestseller and has been published in more than 15 languages.[14]

Internet entrepreneur

In January 2009, expanding upon the themes of his most recent book, Sherwood launched a website called, an online resource center and support network for people facing all manners of adversity.[15][16]

The Survivors Club website is a social enterprise dedicated to helping people survive and thrive in the face of every kind of adversity including health, financial, family, and extreme challenges. In August 2010, the website re-launched as part of the Hearst Digital Network, a division of the Hearst Corporation.[17]

Personal life

In 2003, Sherwood married to Karen Lisa Kehela in a Jewish ceremony in Beverly Hills, California.[3][18][19] Kehela is the Co-Chair of Imagine Films, a division of film and television production company Imagine Entertainment.[20] They have two sons.[2]

Sherwood is fluent in French, Chinese, and Russian.[5]

Community activities

Sherwood is a member of the Board of Directors of City Year (Los Angeles), California, and a member of the Advisory Board of the Center for Public Integrity in Washington, D.C. He is also a member of the Council on Foreign Relations in New York.[21]




  • The Survivors Club: The Secrets and Science That Could Save Your Life (2009), self-help



  1. ^ a b c Topcik, Joel (16 June 2017). "'Nightline' in the Goldston Era". Broadcasting Cable. Retrieved 2020-06-13.
  2. ^ a b LAURA M. HOLSON (2011-03-11). "Slings and Arrows? Nothing New to Him". The New York Times. Retrieved 2016-05-21.
  3. ^ a b c "Weddings/Celebrations; Karen Kehela, Ben Sherwood". The New York Times. 2003-03-30. Retrieved 2016-05-21.
  4. ^ "Richard Sherwood, 64, Lawyer and Museum Chief". The New York Times. 1999-04-09. Retrieved 2009-05-12.
  5. ^ a b c "How to Succeed in Television: The rise and rise and rise of ABC's Ben Sherwood". New York Magazine. 2015-01-13. Retrieved 2016-05-21.
  6. ^ Jewish Journal: "Obama's Jewish war" by Rob Eshman July 11, 2012.
  7. ^ Nellie Andreeva (March 24, 2014). "Incoming Disney/ABC TV Group President Ben Sherwood On Getting The Big Job, His Learning Curve & ABC Topper Paul Lee". Retrieved February 14, 2017.
  8. ^ "Ben Sherwood Named President of ABC News". ABC News. December 3, 2010. Retrieved June 25, 2011.
  9. ^ Ben Sherwood to succeed Anne Sweeney,; accessed August 30, 2015.
  10. ^ Baysinger, Tim (March 19, 2019). "Disney Closes Its $71.3 Billion Acquisition of 21st Century Fox". TheWrap. Retrieved March 27, 2019.
  11. ^ Levine, Bettijane (2006-07-29). "His Fiction Comes Scarily Close to Atlanta's Reality". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2010-09-09.
  12. ^ Fleming, Michael (2009-03-24). "Zac Efron ready for new 'Life'". Variety. Archived from the original on April 17, 2009. Retrieved 2009-05-26.
  13. ^ "The Death and Life of Charlie St. Cloud (2010)". IMDb. 2009-05-12. Archived from the original on May 25, 2009. Retrieved 2009-05-26.
  14. ^ "Hardcover Advice". The New York Times. 2009-02-15. Retrieved 2010-04-26.
  15. ^ "Sioux City Journal: The Survivors Club". Sioux City Journal. 2009-05-07. Retrieved 2009-06-08.
  16. ^ "Web sites an outlet to vent foreclosure stress". NBC News. 2009-03-20. Retrieved 2009-06-08.
  17. ^ "Hearst Magazines Digital Media Launches on its Proprietary Platform". 2010-09-14. Retrieved 2010-09-16.
  18. ^ Los Angeles Times: "Etta Kehela" June 30, 2013
  19. ^ Jewish Journal: "Obituaries: Edmund Kehela" February 8, 2007
  20. ^ "Company Roster (click on Company)". Imagine Entertainment. Archived from the original on July 13, 2011. Retrieved June 25, 2011.
  21. ^ "Membership Roster | Council on Foreign Relations". Retrieved 15 October 2018.

External links