Hoda Kotb named co-anchor of NBC’s TODAY

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NEW YORK — A familiar face is taking over the anchor chair on NBC’s TODAY show.

On Tuesday, the morning news show announced Hoda Kotb, who has been filling in since Matt Lauer was fired in November, is officially replacing him.

According to NBC News Chairman Andy Lack, Kotb will be co-hosting the first two hours of the program with Savannah Guthrie as well as the fourth hour with Kathie Lee Gifford.

“Over the past several weeks, 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 was quoted as saying in an email Tuesday to staff. “They have an undeniable connection with each other and most importantly, with viewers, a hallmark of TODAY.”

“This has to be the most popular decision NBC News has ever made,” Guthrie said while celebrating the news on Tuesday’s TODAY.

“There’s no one I’d rather be sitting next to in 2018 than you,” Kotb said.

The pairing of two women is a departure from the typical man-and-woman morning show format.

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.

Kotb is an NBC News veteran who joined the network in 1998.

Megyn Kelly became the host of the 9 a.m. hour of TODAY last September.

Related: ‘To the people I have hurt, I am truly sorry’, Lauer says

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