Embattled “Meet the Press” moderator David Gregory is leaving NBC News and Chuck Todd will replace him on the venerable Sunday morning public affairs program.
Todd begins his new role on Sept. 7. He will remain as NBC News’ political director, but will relinquish his duties as chief White House correspondent and anchor of MSNBC’s “The Daily Rundown,” NBC announced Thursday.
Gregory, who has hosted the Sunday morning public-affairs program since 2008, had been with NBC News since 1995.
The announcement by NBC News president Deborah Turness confirmed months of speculation that Gregory’s time was running out on the program, which during his tenure dropped from first place to third in the ratings.
In April, Turness was moved to defend Gregory in a statement of support “for the show and for David, now and into the future …”
The official word followed by a couple of hours a Twitter post by Gregory himself that he is departing: “I leave NBC as I came – humbled and grateful,” he said.
Letterman finalist for literary prize
David Letterman, maybe your next career should be as an author.
The CBS “Late Show” host, scheduled to step down in 2015, is a finalist for this year’s Thurber Prize for American Humor. Letterman and illustrator Bruce McCall have been nominated for the satirical picture book “This Land Was Made for You and Me (But Mostly Me).”
Letterman’s fame sets him apart from the other nominees, and so does his employment. He is the only finalist not affiliated with The New Yorker.
The other nominees announced Thursday for the $5,000 prize were magazine contributors Liza Donnelly for “Women On Men” and John Kenney for “Truth In Advertising.” The award will be presented Sept. 30.
James Thurber, for whom the prize is named, was himself a New Yorker humorist.
Bieber pleads guilty in Miami arrest
Justin Bieber has pleaded guilty to misdemeanor careless driving and resisting arrest charges seven months after his arrest in Miami Beach following what police initially called an illegal street drag race.
The 20-year-old pop star’s plea deal with prosecutors detailed at a Wednesday hearing includes a 12-hour anger management course, a $50,000 charitable contribution and court fines. The deal allows Bieber to avoid a driving under the influence conviction.
Bieber was not present at the hearing.
The birthday bunch
Actress Rose Marie (“The Dick Van Dyke Show”) is 91. Actor Mike Connors is 89. Author-journalist Linda Ellerbee is 70. Actress Tess Harper is 64. Actor Larry Mathews (“The Dick Van Dyke Show”) is 59. Actor Zeljko Ivanek (“Heroes,” “Homicide”) is 57. Actress Debra Messing is 46. Actor Ben Affleck is 42. Singer Joe Jonas (The Jonas Brothers) is 25. Actress Jennifer Lawrence is 24.