As predicted, Brian Williams has officially been removed as the anchor for NBC Nightly News, with the network announcing that replacement anchor Lester Holt will be moving permanently into the spot. Williams is staying within the NBCUniversal family, however, moving over to MSNBC as “anchor of breaking news and special reports.” He will also serve as an emergency breaking news anchor for NBC.
Williams issued a statement of apology earlier today, reflecting on the scandal that brought about his suspension and forced withdrawal from the anchor desk: “I’m sorry. I said things that weren’t true. I let down my NBC colleagues and our viewers, and I’m determined to earn back their trust.” Back in February, Williams was found to have fabricated the details of several stories he’d told on air, most notably one in which he claimed to be in a helicopter that was struck by a rocket-propelled grenade during the 2003 invasion of Iraq.
In a fine example of mea culpa corporate synergy, Williams sat down earlier this week with colleague Matt Lauer in a segment that will air Friday on Today and the Nightly News. He’s expected to spend the segment elaborating on his apology, as well as providing details on what his new role at MSNBC will entail when his six-month suspension ends in August.
Meanwhile, Holt, who also hosts NBC’s newsmagazine broadcast Dateline, will take up permanent residence behind the NBC Nightly News anchor desk. The veteran journalist jumped on Twitter briefly this morning, expressing his gratitude and excitement at the new opportunity: