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CNN announces programming changes

Miles O'Brien joining 'AM'; 'Situation Room' to debut


O'Brien
Miles O'Brien is joining "American Morning."
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Miles O'Brien
Wolf Blitzer

(CNN) -- "American Morning" is adding another O'Brien to its mix.

Miles O'Brien, a longtime CNN anchor and correspondent, is joining "AM's" Soledad O'Brien as co-anchor beginning June 20.

"We're honing the cast of 'American Morning' in order to focus on what the audience wants most and what CNN does best: the latest news delivered with the greatest intelligence," CNN/U.S. President Jon Klein said. "In a morning television landscape littered with mindless entertainment, there will be one name you can rely on for no-nonsense news: O'Brien."

Miles O'Brien will be based in New York and will continue to serve as the network's space correspondent.

Bill Hemmer, who has co-hosted "American Morning" since 2002, has decided to pursue opportunities elsewhere, according to the statement.

CNN's afternoon schedule is also changing. Jack Cafferty, who has been with "American Morning" since its inception, is moving to the new 3 p.m. show "The Situation Room," which will be hosted by Wolf Blitzer. The show is scheduled for a mid-summer debut.

"The Situation Room" will be organized in three one-hour blocks: the first will focus on political news, the second on security issues and the third on world and international news. Blitzer will convene teams of CNN correspondents and experts to offer up-to-the-minute reporting on everything going on in the world.

" 'The Situation Room' becomes a showcase for CNN's unparalleled, world-wide newsgathering operations," Klein said. "There will be no better place to monitor developments than in 'The Situation Room,' whose studio has been expressly designed to incorporate traditional reporting methods with the most innovative online resources, such as blogs, Web sites and podcasts."

Joining Blitzer and Cafferty in "The Situation Room" will be "The Turnaround's" Ali Velshi, CNN International anchor Zain Verjee, and analysts and commentators Paul Begala, James Carville, Robert Novak, Victoria Clarke, Jeff Greenfield, Bill Schneider and Carlos Watson, among many others.

The network also announced the hiring of two new producers. Victor Neufeld, a former CBS News and ABC News executive producer, joins "Paula Zahn Now" as senior executive producer. David Doss, former executive producer of ABC's "PrimeTime Thursday" and NBC's "Nightly News with Tom Brokaw," joins "Anderson Cooper 360" as executive producer.

Mark Nelson, CNN's senior executive producer for editorial, will be expanding his role. He will oversee in-depth prime time coverage and report directly to Klein.


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