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Hoda Kotb officially replaces Matt Lauer as Today show co-anchor

Hoda Kotb officially replaces Matt Lauer as Today show co-anchor

The new year means a new job for Hoda Kotb, who on Tuesday was officially named the new co-anchor of the "Today" show on NBC alongside Savannah Guthrie. While joining Guthrie on Monday morning, Kotb revealed her enthusiasm.

"Hoda, you are a partner, and a friend, and a sister and I am so happy to be doing this", she said.

It's certainly a sage one in the midst of the #MeToo movement, when replacing allegedly predatory men with qualified women is becoming something of a trend (see also: Robin Wright ascending to the sole star of House of Cards following sexual misconduct allegations against Kevin Spacey; Christiane Amanpour, at least temporarily, taking over Charlie Rose's vacant timeslot on PBS). But it's a logical move for NBC, especially in the wake of Lauer's abrupt exit amid complaints about inappropriate sexual behavior at work.

Today famously documented Kotb's experience with breast cancer, and in the decade since her mastectomy, she has been an outspoken advocate for breast cancer prevention. She joined NBC News in 1998, first working as a "Dateline" correspondent.

Interestingly, Hoda Kotb's new position as co-anchor will not immediately take her away from the 10:00 a.m. hour, where she sits alongside Kathie Lee Gifford.

Her appointment bucks the trend of morning news shows to have male and female co-hosts.

"Hoda has seamlessly stepped into the co-anchor role alongside Savannah, and the two have quickly hit the ground running", NBC News chairman Andy Lack said in a memo to staff on Tuesday.

"They have an undeniable connection with each other and most importantly, with viewers, a hallmark of TODAY", the email said, adding that Kotb was "remarkable".

Lauer's eventual replacement had always been the subject of internal angst but with a sudden decision forced upon the network, Kotb's performance made it easier. The two hosts were praised for their handling of the situation.

Al Roker and Carson Daly are the other two members of the 7am to 9am Today show. If anything, it has generated higher viewership in the short term.

Kotb joins Savannah Guthrie at the anchor desk - making this Today's first-ever all-female anchor team.


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