Shawna Thomas Will Lead ‘CBS This Morning’ as New Executive Producer
Shawna Thomas, a veteran of upstart journalism efforts like Vice and Quibi as well as mainstays like NBC News’ “Meet the Press,” will take the reins of “CBS This Morning,” filling a role that has been empty for months.
Thomas has logged hours working as a Capitol Hill producer and also covering President Barack Obama. She spent a decade at NBC News before moving to Vice News, where she spent three years as its Washington bureau chief.
“Shawna Thomas is one of the top news minds in our field,” said Susan Zirinsky, president and senior executive producer of CBS News, in a statement. “She’s a hands-on storyteller, accomplished journalist and an inspiring leader. Shawna has consistently embraced new ways and platforms to deliver high-quality journalism to audiences everywhere. She has the passion and experience to take “CBS This Morning’ to the next level during these transformational times.”
Thomas joins a program that has earned a reputation for delivering a harder-hitting version of the news than its A.M. counterparts, but continues to lag them. “CBS This Morning” brought new viewers to CBS after it launched in 2012 and avoided some of the frillier trappings of the format, like cooking segments and summer concerts. But the program lost momentum after one of its co-anchors, Charlie Rose, was ousted after claims of sexual harassment came to the fore. Rose denied the allegations made against him. Since his departure, the show’s anchor lineup has been revamped a few times.
The current “CBS This Morning” is built around the trio of Gayle King, Anthony Mason and Tony Dokoupil as well as King’s talent for getting candid interviews with both the most famous celebrities and the unlikeliest newsmakers. Thomas fills a role previously handled by Diana Miller, who left the broadcast last summer.
Thomas expects to continue to burnish the program’s hard-news bona fides. “I am excited to join a show that is determined to inform the audience without pandering to them and use those precious two hours, as well as unlimited time online, to expand the creative storytelling that the journalists of CBS News are already famous for,” said Thomas, in a statement.
She joins CBS News from Quibi, where she served as a content development executive working on short-form news programming from CBS News, NBC News and BBC News for the mobile video platform.
Thomas earned a BA in political communication from The George Washington University and a master’s degree in broadcast journalism from the University of Southern California.