A day after Ann Curry bid a tearful farewell to the Today co-anchor role she held for just a
Savannah Guthrie has been officially named her successor at the NBC morning
Guthrie filled in as co-host next to Matt Lauer on Friday's
though no announcement was made on-air of her status. NBC confirmed her
promotion Friday afternoon in a press release.
"As soon as Savannah joined NBC News she was a standout,
reporting for every franchise in the news division and rising through the
ranks. She has a one-of-a-kind combination of sharp wit and approachability,
and our viewers value her journalistic skills and legal background just as much
as her humor and charm," said Today
executive producer Jim Bell. "She can effortlessly go from interviewing the
Secretary of State to jumping Olympic-sized hurdles on the Plaza. I'm thrilled
to welcome Savannah as our newest co-anchor, and along with Matt, Al and
Natalie, we've got the best morning team in the business."
Guthrie's ascension had been expected, though she only
joined Today as the 9 a.m. host a
year ago following Meredith Vieira's departure.
She is also the network's chief legal correspondent, and was previously NBC
News White House correspondent.
Though Guthrie is thought to exhibit a greater ease with the
playful stunts often required of morning show hosts (a common critique of
Curry), industry insiders say NBC would have rather she had more time to settle
in at the morning show before promoting her to co-host alongside Lauer.
The transition was fast-tracked in part because of increased
ratings competition from ABC's Good
Morning America, which won several weeks over Today this spring,
and NBC's upcoming coverage of the Summer Olympic Games, during which Today will broadcast from London.
In a press conference Wednesday for its Olympics coverage,
NBCUniversal CEO Steve Burke said
the Games were a chance to "revitalize the Today show," which
will now travel to London with its new team in place. Curry will still go to
the Olympics but in her new role as Today
anchor-at-large and NBC News national/international correspondent.