Byron-Pitts

*ABC News is reportedly close to signing “60 Minutes correspondent Byron Pitts, according to Politico.com.

“Pitts will serve as both chief national correspondent and anchor at ABC News, and will appear across the network’s programming. ABC News President Ben Sherwood is expected to announce the news next week,” Dylan Byers of Politico reported.

“Pitts is just the latest in a string of high-profile hires for the network,” Byers continued. “Sherwood announced the hire of New York Times reporters Jeff Zeleny and Susan Saulny earlier this week, as well as the appointment of Rick Klein to political director.

Both Pitts and Saulny are black journalists, providing a marked contrast with the new hires at CNN after Jeff Zucker recently assumed the top job, notes TheRoot.com.

“Zucker hired white journalists Jake Tapper, Chris Cuomo and Rachel Nichols while sidelining anchor Soledad O’Brien, who is black and Latina. Zucker’s appointment also prompted the resignation of Mark Whitaker, an African American who was CNN executive vice president and managing editor. Zucker’s personnel moves prompted protests from the National Association of Black Journalists and the National Association of Hispanic Journalists.”

Pitts, 52, joined CBS News as a correspondent in May 1998. He was named a contributing correspondent on “60 Minutes” in 2009, becoming the first African American presence on the show since correspondent Ed Bradley died in 2006.

Meanwhile, Pitts’ wife, Lyne Pitts, is also involved in a new venture. She is heading up the U.S. operation of Arise News, a 24-hour international TV news operation that launched last month.