Jenna Bush Hager is confirmed to succeed Kathie Lee Gifford as Hoda Kotb’s co-host for the fourth hour of NBC’s Today, it was announced on Tuesday morning.
As previously announced, Gifford will bid Today adieu in April, at the time of her 11th anniversary with the morning program.
A daughter of U.S. President George W. Bush, Hager joined NBC in August 2009 as a correspondent and contributor for Today. Since then, she has filled in as an anchor and occasionally subbed for Gifford during the fourth hour.
NBC News chief Noah Oppenheim said in an email to staffers that Hager’s “compassion and curiosity come through in all of her stories, along with her Texas-sized sense of humor.” He also noted that “while it’s bittersweet to say goodbye to Kathie Lee, we are thrilled to have the opportunity to make some changes at 10 am.”
The fourth-hour change-up comes in the wake of Today shaking up its 9 o’clock hour, picking NBC veteran Al Roker, meteorologist Dylan Dreyer and journalists Craig Melvin and Sheinelle Jones to co-host what had been Megyn Kelly’s portion of the morning show.
Do you welcome Hager as heir apparent to Kathie Lee?