Williams was a cast member for nine seasons on the hit Bravo reality series before announcing her exit in 2021
Bravo announced on Tuesday that the fan favorite, who previously departed the show in 2021, is returning for season 16. Williams Guobadia, 42, also signed an overall scripted talent deal with NBCUniversal to partner on “scripted project opportunities across the company’s broadcast and streaming properties.”
“I'm incredibly thankful for the vision and faith NBCUniversal has put in me to be a larger part of their family,” she said in a statement. “I’m looking forward to being back on The Real Housewives of Atlanta, and showing the world my new world!”
“Porsha Williams Guobadia is a multi-hyphenate and we are fortunate to collaborate and tap into her creativity and passion through this partnership,” Rachel Smith, Executive Vice President of Unscripted Content, Lifestyle and Documentaries, NBCUniversal Entertainment, shared in a statement. “Our audience has supported and admired Porsha as she so authentically, hilariously and vulnerably shared her life over the years and we couldn’t be more excited to welcome her back to the NBCU family.”
She made her own announcement Tuesday on Instagram.
"Who said that?" she asked, echoing her former costar Kandi Burruss's famous saying. "Porsha Williams coming back to Real Housewives of Atlanta? That's false. But Porsha Guobadia is in the building. Haha, see ya, mwah!"
Williams Guobadia’s departure from RHOA came months after news broke that she was engaged to now-husband Simon Guobadia, whom she met while filming season 13 of the franchise through his then-wife Falynn Pina, a recurring guest on the show introduced to viewers as Williams Guobadia's "friend."
Guobadia and Pina were separated by the time he and Williams Guobadia started dating, though fans didn't know that when the two went public with their romance, soon after season 13 finished airing. Rumors swirled, and Williams' announcement that she was leaving RHOA caused some to question question her reasons for the exit.
"I wasn't running away," the Real Housewives Ultimate Girls Trip alum told PEOPLE in March 2023. "And I don't think any of my followers who truly knew me would believe that I would run away from the show for that."
RHOA cameras have captured Williams Guobadia through many ups and downs in her personal life. She was married to former football star Kordell Stewart when she first joined the show in season 5 — but learned not long after via a post on social media that he was divorcing her. Her engagement to ex-fiancé Dennis McKinley fell apart when he cheated on her, and though they had a child together — 4-year-old daughter Pilar Jhena McKinley — the birth led to a struggle with postpartum depression.
"I've dealt with a lot of harsh things on the show," Williams Guobadia told PEOPLE. "And I've been there at the beginning of every season to film, with the camera on. So no, this had nothing to do with that."
At the time, Williams Guobadia shared that she made the decision to leave RHOA for season 14 months earlier.
"I had already decided that it was time for me to step away at least six months before I told any of the executives what I was going to do — and long before I even met my now-husband," she says. "I was turning 40, I was hitting my 10-year mark on the show, and I really just had to reassess where I was and what I wanted totally out of my life. So that's where that decision came from."
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