NBC’s Weekend Today is swapping one Philly woman for another.
NBC News’ Kristen Welker, who has roots in the Fairmount section of the city, will take over as cohost of Weekend Today for fellow Philly native Sheinelle Jones, NBC has announced. Jones recently said that she would step back from her duties on the show after five years to spend time with her family but will continue cohosting the third hour of the Today show during the week.
“I’m so excited and honored to join @PeterAlexander and the @TODAYshow team,” Welker tweeted following the network’s announcement Wednesday.
A graduate of Germantown Friends School and Harvard University, Welker began her career as a reporter at ABC affiliate KRCR-TV in Redding, Calif., in 2001 and later returned to her hometown in 2005 to work at NBC10 as a reporter and weekend anchor. She remained in Philly until 2010, when she signed on with NBC News as a correspondent based out of Burbank, Calif. The following year, Welker became a White House correspondent for the network.
Since joining the NBC News team, Welker has also worked as a fill-in anchor for Weekend Today, but the network’s move puts her in the role full-time.
Jones, who was born in Philly but raised in Kansas, spent nearly a decade at Fox 29 as cohost of Good Day Philadelphia before moving on to NBC’s Weekend Today in 2014. Last year, she joined Today as cohost of the third hour of the program, prompting her to work six days a week. In late December, Jones announced that she would leave Weekend Today to be more present in the lives of her three children.
Despite her national network gig, Welker still spends some of her time in her hometown. In April she returned to emcee the Madam C.J. Walker Awards Luncheon. In 2017, Welker married husband John Hughes at the Bellevue Hotel in Center City.