Susan Zirinsky named president of CBS News, replacing David Rhodes

Susan Zirinsky will replace David Rhodes as CBS News president becoming first woman to lead division

Susan Zirinsky will replace David Rhodes as CBS News president becoming first woman to lead division

This announcement follows the news that David Rhodes has decided the time is right to move on to new opportunities.

News executive producer Susan Zirinsky speaks onstage during the "The Injustice Files" panel in Pasadena, California.

Come March 1, Rhodes will be a senior adviser to Ianniello and CBS News.

Rhodes also yet to name a permanent executive producer at "60 Minutes" and replace Ryan Kadro, the outgoing executive producer of "CBS This Morning".

I'm grateful to David for his 8 years with the Company, during which time he led CBS News with integrity and editorial rigor and launched CBSN.

When Rose was ousted past year from "CBS This Morning", CBS News replaced him with John Dickerson of "Face the Nation".

Rhodes last fall also had to oust his former partner, Fager, who had returned to his original job as executive producer of "60 Minutes".

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People want to be part of the conversation and to see for themselves if all the hype is justified. Where the conceit is really strong, then trying to illustrate it is kind of nearly meaningless.

Meanwhile, ratings have now taken a hit at some of Rhodes' shows as he's had to grapple with anchor changes.

"It was a cultural shift in the country and CBS had a piece of it, no doubt about it", Zirinsky said. But the ouster of Charlie Rose in late 2017 after allegations were raised of unwanted sexual advances opened a new era of uncertainty at the news unit, which became the subject of a corporate probe. The CBS board is now trying to halt a multi-million dollar payment Moonves was to receive upon leaving.

CBS Corp. acting Chief Executive Joseph Ianniello explained that while Zirinsky had been in the running to be executive producer of 60 Minutes, in her new role "Susan can add more value creatively on some of our other broadcasts and have an impact that's much greater on the entire organization". She reportedly faces some challenges, including a dip in ratings at "CBS Evening News", "Face the Nation" and "CBS This Morning". "The public's interest today for news and information is intense, and CBS News is uniquely positioned to expand its reach".

"I really believe that the power is within us and there's work to be done", said Zirinsky, who plans to address the CBS News staff on Monday.

She later joined the "CBS Morning News" as an associate producer before moving on to the "CBS Evening News with Walter Cronkite" and becoming a White House producer.

"She is an exceptional leader, a creative force, and an outstanding and proven journalist", he said.

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