Hoda Kotb was named the permanent co-anchor of NBC‘s Today Tuesday morning alongside Savannah Guthrie. The decision was not much of a surprise given that Kotb had been co-headlining the morning news show since Matt Lauer was fired over sexual harassment allegations in November.
The announcement, though expected by some, was still well-received. “This has to be the most popular decision that NBC News has ever made,” Guthrie told viewers.
Kotb, 53, was super happy about the promotion. “I am pinching myself,” said a smiling Kotb. “I think we should send some medics to Alexandria, Virginia, where my mom has likely fainted after hearing the open of that show.”
Perhaps Kotb was elated for her new position represents another victory for Black female anchors, who have become a staple at NBC. Kotb has been a familiar face on NBC since she initially joined the network in 1998 as a Dateline correspondent. She has been part of the lives of Today viewers with having co-hosted the show’s fourth hour with Kathie Lee Gifford since 2008. She stepped up to Lauer’s seat a few weeks ago, having boosted ratings?
Kotb has joined the ranks of other successful Black women anchors such as Tamron Hall and Mara Schiavocampo as part of the network’s legacy.
Hall, 46, came to NBC’s rescue in 2007 and joined “Today” as a co-host in 2014, according to the New York Daily News. She achieved a decade of notable work with NBC before news of her abrupt departure from the network spread in February as a way to make room for a program hosted by former Fox News host Megyn Kelly.However, the move wasn’t a great one for NBC as Kelly’s ratings drastically slumped in the wake of Hall’s departure.
Schiavocampo, 38, an Emmy-winning journalist, was an NBC News and MSNBC anchor. She earned spots and filed reports on the network’s Today, Nightly News, Weekend Nightly News and Weekend Today before moving to ABC News in 2014.
Considering the successful track records of Kotb, Hall and Schiavocampo, Black women have left an indelible mark on NBC. Many viewers may even say that these three women, along with other anchors of color, have helped to save the network from low ratings, irrelevancy and more throughout the years.
5 Perfect Replacements For Matt Lauer On The ‘Today’ Show