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CBS News Chief Neeraj Khemlani is stepping down from his role


By Oliver Darcy, CNN Business

(CNN) — CBS News President and co-head Neeraj Khemlani, who has led the Tiffany Network’s news division and local TV stations for a little more than two years, abruptly announced Sunday that he would step down from his role.

“I have some news to share today, and I don’t want to bury the lede,” read a memo from Khemlani to staffers. “After an exhilarating run, and before the next season starts, I’ve decided to step back from my current role and start a new exciting chapter.”

Khemlani said he had signed a “multi-year, multi-platform first look deal with CBS to develop content” for the network, including “documentaries, scripted series and books for Simon & Schuster.”

It’s unclear who will replace Khemlani, though Wendy McMahon, who shared his title as president and co-head of CBS News and TV stations, is seen as a possible successor.

George Cheeks, chief executive of CBS, praised Khemlani in a separate memo to staff and said that he would update them “soon” with “information about the new leadership and structure for the division.”

The lack of a new network chief or interim leadership team announcement in the wake of Khemlani’s exit Sunday pointed to the sudden nature of the decision.

The CBS News president oversees iconic news programs, such as “60 Minutes,” “CBS Sunday Morning,” “Face the Nation,” and the “Evening News.”

While CBS News dominates much of its competition on Sundays, the network has not been able to climb out of third place against NBC and ABC with its daily programs, though it improved its standing in the ratings under Khemlani.

During his tenure, Khemlani bolstered CBS News’ reporting ranks, luring prominent journalists such as Robert Costa and Cecilia Vega to the outlet. While Khemlani was able to poach prominent reporting names to the network, it wasn’t all smooth sailing. The CBS News chief was the subject of a human resources probe earlier this year.

Khemlani is the third network news chief to exit in 2023. Chris Licht was fired from CNN earlier this year after a rocky run and Noah Oppenheim exited NBC News in January.

™ & © 2023 Cable News Network, Inc., a Warner Bros. Discovery Company. All rights reserved.

Article Topic Follows: CNN - Business/Consumer

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