Hoda Kotb made her official debut as a co-anchor for NBC's "TODAY" this Tuesday. Kotb, 53, sat alongside Savannah Guthrie, who has co-anchored the show since 2012, during the first two hours of the morning news show.
They are the first all-woman pair to anchor the NBC news program. However, they are not the first all-female morning show duo: ABC News' Diane Sawyer and Robin Roberts co-anchored from 2006-2009, according to Today.com.
In an email announcing Kotb's new role, NBC News Chairman Andrew Lack stated that Kotb has "seamlessly stepped" into the co-anchor position, which she filled temporarily after Matt Lauer was fired in November amid accusations of inappropriate sexual behavior.
"They have an undeniable connection with each other and most importantly, with viewers, a hallmark of TODAY," Lack said in a statement.
On Tuesday, Guthrie, 46, told viewers, "This has to be the most popular decision that NBC News has ever made and I am so thrilled."
"I am pinching myself," Kotb, who said she was offered the role over the holidays, replied. She joked that someone should check on her mother who had likely fainted after hearing the news that she is now co-anchor.
Kotb joined "TODAY" in 2008 as a co-host of the show's fourth hour, a role that she will continue to fill, and has been a frequent substitute in the program's anchor chair for a number of years. She also hosts "The Hoda Show on SiriusXM."
In an interview with People magazine, Guthrie relayed her excitement about co-anchoring with a woman and said that the two are "grateful to NBC for not having some old-fashioned notion" about what an anchoring team should look like
"I think they looked at it and said, 'Why would you change this? This is working, it feels good,'" she said.
"When you click with someone, man, woman, it doesn't matter. If it works, it works," Kotb told the magazine. "We're sort of like sisters."
During Tuesday's early morning broadcast, Guthrie once again expressed her enthusiasm for working with Kotb. "Hoda, you are a partner, and a friend, and a sister and I am so happy to be doing this," she said.
Kotb replied, "There's no one I'd rather be sitting next to in 2018 than you."
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