David Corvo, the guiding force behind hundreds of hours of NBC’s signature “Dateline” newsmagazine, will step away from the role at the end of 2023, bringing to a close a TV-news career that has spanned four decades.
Corvo has been with “Dateline” in some capacity since joining NBC News in 1995 as a vice president responsible for primetime news programming. Under his aegis, the show has morphed from a general-interest newsmagazine — anchored in its earliest days by Stone Philips and Jane Pauley — to a massive content franchise focused intently on true-crime stories. Over the years, “Dateline” has expanded into podcasts; a 24/7 streaming channel; and even scripted fare, as seen in the 2022 NBC limited series, “The Thing About Pam,” which starred Renee Zellweger.
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Corvo, who has been senior executive producer of “Dateline,” will hand off those duties to Liz Cole, the program’s executive producer and president of NBC News Studios, where she will maintain her duties. News of Corvo’s decision was revealed Wednesday in a memo from Rebecca Blumenstein, president of editorial for NBC News, who has ultimate responsibility for “Dateline” and properties such as “Meet The Press.” The shift in command is only the latest change of hands under Blumenstein since she joined NBC News from The New York Times earlier in 2023. Kristen Welker recently replaced Chuck Todd as moderator of “Meet The Press.”
Corvo and Cole “worked together to make ‘Dateline’ the gold standard in true crime reporting, and successfully expanded it from the network to broadcast and cable syndication, to its streaming channel Dateline 24/7, and to audio where it consistently tops Apple’s podcast charts,” Blumenstein said in her memo. “How popular is Dateline? More than 31 billion minutes was consumed across all platforms in just the third quarter alone. I’m confident David and Liz will ensure a smooth transition of this marquee NBC News brand, which remains a vital part of the NBC News portfolio.”
“Dateline” is the longest-running series in NBC primetime history and is currently in its 32nd season. The program is anchored by Lester Holt and features correspondents Andrea Canning, Josh Mankiewicz, Keith Morrison and Dennis Murphy. Corvo will continue to work with Blumenstein as an advisor on various projects.
Corvo has experimented with other newsmagazines during his time at NBC News. He launched “Rock Center,” the middle-of-the-week primetime newsmagazine led by Brian Williams, launched in 2011 as a way to keep a a general-interest product in the NBC News portfolio as “Dateline” shifted to a single-story focus. In 2016, he tested “On Assignment,” a newsmagazine focused more heavily on innovation and adventure, just as upstarts like Vice were gaining new attention for putting correspondents out in the field. Corvo was tasked in 2017 with launching Megyn Kelly in a Sunday newsmagazine that tried to take on CBS News’ “60 Minutes.”
Before joining NBC News, Corvo was a senior executive at CBS News, where, in his last role, he supervised primetime programs such as “60 Minutes.” “48 Hours” and “Street Stories.” He also was the executive in charge of many of the network’s documentary specials. He began his broadcast journalism career in 1975 as a news writer and producer at KNXT, now KCBS), the CBS-owned station in Los Angeles. He later helped launch the station’s first investigative unit, and was named head of the unit in 1979. In 1980, he became executive producer for news coverage.
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