News / 

NBC News president Steve Capus stepping down



This archived news story is available only for your personal, non-commercial use. Information in the story may be outdated or superseded by additional information. Reading or replaying the story in its archived form does not constitute a republication of the story.

NEW YORK (AP) - NBC News President Steve Capus, who presided over years of strong ratings at the news division and expanded digital offerings but was hurt by the downfall of the "Today" show, said Friday that he was resigning.

The Philadelphia-area native joined NBC News 20 years ago and produced various newscasts for Brian Williams before being appointed news division president by Jeff Zucker, at the time chief of NBC Universal, on the week that Hurricane Katrina struck New Orleans in 2005.

NBC parent company Comcast Corp.'s decision last year to appoint Pat Fili-Krushel to a supervisory role over the company's news properties signaled to many that Capus' tenure was nearing an end. His contract gave Capus an opt-out provision and he chose to exercise it. Capus said in an email to staff members that "it is now time to head in a new direction," although he hasn't said what that might be.

"I have seldom described my role as presiding over NBC News," Capus said. "Instead, I have viewed it as leading a collaborative effort to pursue journalistic excellence."

A primary yardstick for network news' success is the ratings for the flagship evening news program, and NBC's broadcast with Williams has held on to the top spot. Capus has expanded NBC's reach with specialty websites aimed at black and Latino audiences, and reached a deal to take over all responsibility for the main NBC news site, buying out Microsoft's stake.

Capus also oversaw the MSNBC news division. MSNBC has become profitable through its decision to skew liberal in its commentary.

Tim Russert's sudden death forced Capus to revamp the Sunday morning political talk show "Meet the Press," where David Gregory has run hot and cold since taking over.

The profitable "Today" show has taken a hard fall in the past year and now runs a consistent second to ABC's "Good Morning America." NBC was widely criticized for mismanagement of Ann Curry's dismissal as "Today" anchor last summer. Jim Bell, the show's executive producer, stepped down last fall.

Fili-Krushel set out a new temporary management structure, increasing the authority of executives Alex Wallace and Antoine Sanfuentes, until she names a successor.

"NBC News is America's leading source of television news and Steve has been a big part of that success," Fili-Krushel said in a memo to staff members.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

David Bauder

    SIGN UP FOR THE KSL.COM NEWSLETTER

    Catch up on the top news and features from KSL.com, sent weekly.
    By subscribing, you acknowledge and agree to KSL.com's Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

    KSL Weather Forecast