Barbara Walters has attached an official date to her previously announced retirement.
ABC announced Monday that Walters’ final day co-hosting The View will be Friday, May 16. That same night, ABC will air a two-hour special at 9/8c highlighting her life and career.
“In this business there are legends, there are icons, and then there is Barbara Walters,” Robert A. Iger, Chairman and Chief Executive of The Walt Disney Company said in a statement. “She’s a dear friend and colleague as well as someone I deeply admire, and it’s impossible to fully convey her impact and influence on television. She broke barriers, defied convention, made history and set the standard for journalistic excellence for more than 50 years. It’s hard to imagine television without her.”
Walters will remain an executive producer on The View and, per ABC, “will be a lifelong member of ABC News, contributing as news warrants.”
The news was confirmed by Walters herself during Monday’s broadcast of The View:
Many of you have had to put up with me since your childhood — and, you’re not free of me yet, because I am not leaving television entirely. I will continue in my role as executive producer of The View, which means I can continue to watch [executive producer] Bill Geddie, with whom I have worked for more than 25 years, get older and balder … as I get blonder.
After acknowledging how much she enjoys working with fellow co-hosts Whoopi Goldberg, Sherri Shepherd and Jenny McCarthy, Walters assured viewers she will return periodically for newsy events.