NBC News had one surprise left in the shuffle at the top of “Today.”
Don Nash, a more than 20-year vet of the ayemcast, was tapped Wednesday to take the day-to-day reins of the four-hour broadcast as exec producer. Alexandra Wallace, NBC News senior veep, was officially named executive in charge of “Today,” a new role for the Peacock. Wallace’s appointment had been expected but the decision on the exec producer post was kept close to the vest by NBC News brass.
Nash, who reports to Wallace, will succeed Jim Bell as of Dec. 1. Bell was shifted Tuesday to NBC’s Olympics unit, serving as exec producer of all coverage.
The changes come a few months after “Today” slipped into second place in the morning show race behind ABC’s “Good Morning America” after more than a decade of dominating the daypart. “GMA” had been on the rise earlier this year, and has consistently pulled ahead of “Today” since late summer, after the Peacock wrapped its summer Olympics coverage in August.
Since September, “Today” in its core 7-9 a.m. slot has averaged 4.5 million viewers, including 1.8 million in the target adults 25-54 demo, compared to 5 million viewers for “GMA,” including 2 million in the key demo.
“Don Nash deserves to be at the helm of ‘Today,’ ” NBC News prexy Steve Capus said in announcing the appointments. “He is a beloved member of the Today family who brings vision, commitment and a deep familiarity to all aspects of the broadcast. The formidable individual talents of Alex, Don and the ‘Today’ leadership are now combined and I’m confident our team is well positioned for success.”
Nash most recently was senior broadcast producer for “Today,” having worked his way up the ranks after starting as a production assistant.
In addition to her “Today” duties, Wallace will continue to serve as exec producer of NBC’s primetime newsmag “Rock Center with Brian Williams.” She was previously chief deputy in the news division to Capus. Her resume also includes stints as exec producer of “NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams” and “Weekend Today.”