Natalie Morales signed off for the last time on The Today Show after over two decades with NBC. Morales announced in October that she would be joining The Talk, and she said her final goodbye to her Today viewers on Friday. "Dear viewers... From the minute I stepped in front of the camera and into your living rooms, I knew it was an honor to be part of your morning tradition, the most sacred time," Morales said during her final show. "With you, I've had a front seat to moments that captured our hearts, moments I will forever cherish as I witnessed history."
"I traveled the country with some of America's leaders and covered the most incredible stories — like the rescue of 33 Chilean miners trapped underground for 69 days. Together we witnessed a miracle," she continued. "I have enjoyed two royal weddings and held court in London awaiting the first royal birth in decades. Events forever on my highlight reel. So many extraordinary people touched our lives, trusting us with their awe-inspiring journeys."
Morales told viewers "you and my Today family have given me a place I will forever call home" and thanked them for "all those mornings and the lifetime of memories we now share." Morales already started co-hosting The Talk alongside Sheryl Underwood, Amanda Kloots, Jerry O'Connell, and Akbar Gbajabiamila, making her debut on Oct. 11. Morales will continue to appear on Dateline through the end of the year.
"It's an extraordinary opportunity to be joining this team at The Talk," Morales said in a statement after she was announced as the newest panelist. "I love the new energy and direction and couldn't be more excited to join Sheryl, Amanda, Jerry, and Akbar. I'm looking forward to many good times while talking about the days' topics, and I can't wait to get going."
The Talk has had almost a full panel shakeup over the past several months, following the exits of Carrie Ann Inaba, Elaine Welteroth and Sharon Osbourne. Both Inaba and Welteroth exited the show in August, and Osbourne was fired in March after sparking backlash for comments she made to Underwood while defending friend Piers Morgan's treatment of Meghan Markle. The Talk debuted its 12th season on Sept. 13 and airs weekdays on CBS.