Charles Gibson in 2008.
|Born||Charles deWolf Gibson
March 9, 1943
Evanston, Illinois, United States
News with Charles Gibson anchor (2006-2009)
Good Morning America co-anchor (1987–1998; 1999–2006)
ABC News journalist (1981-2009)
During Gibson's tenure, World News beat NBC Nightly News, anchored by Brian Williams, in the program ratings during 2007, the first time in several years. The two programs have now been in a dead heat, taking turns at the top of the ratings among household viewers and the 25–54 age group prized by advertisers. Katie Couric's CBS Evening News remained a distant third.
Gibson previously co-anchored ABC News's Good Morning America, a breakfast television news and talk show, for a span of nineteen years; first from February 1987 to May 1998, then again from January 1999 to June 2006, co-hosting the show with Joan Lunden and Diane Sawyer, respectively.
On September 2, 2009, ABC News announced that Gibson would retire from World News in January 2010, to be replaced by Diane Sawyer, a veteran ABC News journalist and a co-anchor of Good Morning America since 1999. Sawyer's debut broadcast occurred earlier than first announced, on December 21, 2009.
Born Charles deWolf Gibson in Evanston, Illinois, he moved to Washington, D.C., when he was age 12. He attended the Sidwell Friends School, a private college-preparatory school in Washington. In 1965, Gibson graduated from Princeton University in Princeton, New Jersey, where he was news director for WPRB-FM, the university radio station, and a member of Princeton Tower Club. Gibson planned to go into law, but he was turned down by many institutions because his grades were not sufficient for top-tier law schools.
Gibson joined the RKO Radio Network in 1966 as a producer, but because of the Vietnam War, he joined the U.S. Coast Guard and worked as a reporter/anchor for WLVA (now WSET) television in Lynchburg, Virginia, as one of five employees. In 1970, he moved to WMAL-TV (now WJLA) television, the ABC network affiliate in Washington, D.C.
Gibson joined ABC News in 1975 and during the late 1970s and 1980s, he covered the U.S. House of Representatives and the White House. Gibson sometimes co-anchored World News Tonight with Peter Jennings when Jennings was reporting on location. He also occasionally substituted for Ted Koppel on ABC News's Nightline, a late-night hard and soft news program.
During the 2004 U.S. presidential-election campaign, he moderated, on October 8, 2004, the second presidential debate in St. Louis, Missouri, between the two nominee candidates—Republican incumbent U.S. President George W. Bush and Democratic U.S. Senator John Kerry.
In 1987 he first became a co-anchor of Good Morning America. He left the program in 1998. He returned to the program as co-anchor from 1999 to 2006.
In April 2005, Gibson began substitute anchoring World News Tonight (its name at the time) regularly after long-time anchor Peter Jennings’s treatment for lung cancer prevented him from anchoring. On August 7, 2005, Gibson announced Jennings's death and the following day anchored World News Tonight, and was eventually offered the job.
Even though he was a leading choice to replace Jennings, Gibson could not agree with David Westin, president of ABC News, over how long he would be anchor. On December 5, 2005, Elizabeth Vargas and Bob Woodruff, veteran ABC News journalists, were chosen to be Jennings's permanent replacements. They had both been interim anchors.
Following Woodruff's severe injury on January 29, 2006, while on assignment in Iraq, and Vargas's announcement that she was pregnant, some critics questioned whether Vargas could sustain the program on her own, pointing to falling ratings. In March 2006, Cindy Adams of the New York Post reported that Gibson would become Woodruff's "Temporary Permanent Replacement" on World News Tonight. According to some reports, while GMA co-host Diane Sawyer had coveted the World News Tonight anchor chair, Gibson had one year on his contract left and threatened to retired if he didn't get that position, and as GMA was ABC News' most lucrative show it would be badly damaged if it lost both Sawyer and Gibson.
On May 23, 2006, Gibson was named sole anchor of World News Tonight, effective May 29, 2006, after Vargas announced her resignation from the program. She cited her doctors' recommendation to reduce considerably her workload because of her upcoming maternity leave, and her wish to spend more time with her new baby. She would return to anchor 20/20.
During the summer of 2006, the program's title was changed to World News with Charles Gibson. According to The New York Times, he had previously planned to retire from ABC News on June 22, 2007, but remained to anchor the newscast.
During the 2008 U.S. presidential-election campaign, he was a co-moderator with George Stephanopoulos, another ABC News journalist, for the April 16, 2008, Democratic Party's presidential-election debate in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, between U.S. Senators Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama; it was broadcast by ABC News. Both moderators were later criticized in the The Washington Post and other media outlets for their selection of insubstantial, "gotcha"-style questions.
On September 11, 2008, he interviewed Sarah Palin, the 2008 Republican vice-presidential nominee candidate, her first interview after being named as presidential nominee John McCain's running mate. The interview received criticism of bias from conservative political commentator Charles Krauthammer, specifically surrounding her hesitance in answering a question he posed about the Bush Doctrine. Gibson has said in a subsequent interview with Michael Kay on the YES Network's Centerstage program that he simply imagined what questions he would ask Democratic vice-presidential nominee candidate Joe Biden under the same circumstance and asked them of Palin. It was later reported that he had asked identical questions of Clinton, McCain and Obama in earlier debates and interviews in the spring of 2008.
According to reports, while ABC tried to persuade Gibson to stay on, he decided to retire. On September 2, 2009, ABC News announced that Diane Sawyer will replace Gibson at the World News anchor chair following his retirement from ABC News. Gibson anchored his final edition of World News on December 18, 2009. 
Gibson's wife, Arlene Gibson, is an educator who recently retired as head of school at The Spence School in New York City, New York. She has also held positions at other schools in New York City and New Jersey, and was previously the head of the middle school at the Bryn Mawr School in Baltimore, Maryland, in the 1980s. She is on the board of trustees at her alma mater, Bryn Mawr College in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania.
On May 17, 2006, Gibson delivered the commencement address at Monmouth University's class of 2006's graduation ceremony held at the PNC Bank Arts Center in Holmdel Township, New Jersey. He was also presented with a doctor of humane letters, an honorary degree.
On June 17, 2007, Gibson delivered the commencement address to the class of 2007's graduation ceremony at Union College in Schenectady, New York. Gibson also received an honorary doctor of humane letters, as well as a framed copy of his father's 1923 college yearbook entry. His father, Burdett Gibson, grew up in Schenectady and graduated from the college in 1923. Gibson contributed an estimated US$75,000 to the college to help create the Burdett Gibson Class of 1923 Scholarship, which is awarded annually to a deserving student in need.
In 2006, Gibson donated $85,000 to Shenandoah University in Winchester, Virginia, to establish the Langdon Gibson II Music Scholarship Fund to honor his brother Langdon Gibson II, who died in early 2006. His brother had started an informal music-concert series—using musicians from the Shenandoah Conservatory (a part of the university)—in his renovated barn in the nearby Middleburg, Virginia, area; the series later became known as the Windy Meadow Concert Series.