Jenna Bush Hager the 'hot bet' to fill Kathie Lee Gifford's 'Today' position: report


Jenna Bush Hager is expected to fill Kathie Lee Gifford's role on "Today" when she leaves in April, sources tell Page Six.

Hours after Gifford's impending exit was announced during the fourth hour of the NBC morning show, the outlet reported that Bush Hager is the "hot bet" with insiders to join Hoda during the 10 a.m. hour.

The 37-year-old, who joined "Today" as a contributor in 2009, has consistently filled in for both Gifford and Kotb over the years and is reportedly "become popular with viewers and NBC News chiefs alike."

SEE ALSO: Watch Kathie Lee Gifford announce her exit from the 'Today' show

"Jenna's my hot bet to join Hoda," a source told Page Six.

In the email that NBC News president Noah Oppenheim sent to NBC staffers announcing Gifford's departure on Tuesday morning, he noted that there are already plans in the works for the future of the second half of "Today."

"We will have much more to share before then about our plans for that hour, which will, of course, continue to include Hoda," he wrote

"I know somebody wonderful will be sitting in this seat afterwards," Gifford said live on Tuesday. "I have my idea who might be absolutely wonderful, but there's a great pool of talent and beauty and heart right around here. And if they come from outside the family, they will soon become family because we treat everyone that way."

In addition to Bush Hager's likely promotion, Sheinelle Jones is also likely to get a new permanent seat on "Today" during the reshuffled 9 a.m. panel, which has taken the place of the canceled "Megyn Kelly Today." An insider told Page Six that Jones is "much loved" at NBC.

Kathie Lee Gifford's last day on the "Today" show is April 7, 2019, the show's next big anniversary.