CBS News has named veteran Bill Whitaker a 60 Minutes correspondent, it was announced today by Jeff Fager, the executive producer of the newsmag and the chairman of CBS News. Whitaker, who has been based in Los Angeles, will move to the New York area and begin appearing in the fall on the CBS newsmagazine, which is America’s most-watched news program. The newsmag got nicked in its reputation when Lara Logan took a leave in the wake of the program’s since-discredited story on the Benghazi attacks.
Whitaker has covered virtually all of the major news stories in the West since he was posted to Los Angeles in 1992, reporting regularly for the CBS Evening News and other CBS News broadcasts. He also has worked for CBS News’s Sunday Morning turning out feature stories and profiles, including ones on Barbra Streisand, Norman Lear, Gladys Knight, and Mike Tyson. He has interviewed First Lady Michelle Obama and Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto and he’s a seasoned foreign correspondent who recently covered the funeral of Nelson Mandela from South Africa. He also did pieces from Japan on the Fukushima nuclear disaster and from Haiti after the earthquake there. He reported from Kabul during the early stages of the War in Afghanistan. In 2008, he covered Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign. He was the lead reporter covering the 2000 presidential campaign of George W. Bush. Prior to his assignment to Los Angeles, Whitaker served as the CBS News Tokyo correspondent (1989-‘92), covering the uprising in Tiananmen Square, military coup attempts in the Philippines and the enthronement of Japan’s Emperor Akihito.
Before that, Whitaker was based in Atlanta (1985-1988), where he won an Emmy for his reports on the collapse of Jim and Tammy Bakker’s television ministry and covered the 1988 presidential campaign of Michael Dukakis. Whitaker joined CBS News as a reporter in November 1984.