Ann Curry Ann Curry

Today news anchor Ann Curry's passport has been given a workout in recent years as she's traveled the world to report on the genocide in Darfur, the earthquakes in Japan and Haiti (where, with a Tweet, she helped get clearance for the landing of a plane carrying medical assistance) and, most recently, Pakistan during the days that followed the killing of Osama bin Laden. On June 9, the intrepid Curry will settle in behind the big desk of NBC's top-rated morning show, where she'll succeed Meredith Vieira as Matt Lauer's coanchor. We talked with her about her upcoming new role.

TV Guide Magazine: What are you looking forward to most in your new job?
I concentrate so hard on the news of the world and constantly looking for illumination from it. I want to be able to widen out and have more fun and laughter — that's a huge thing. I think it will be the balance that I personally wish for.

TV Guide Magazine: Are you going to travel less?
I'm going to work behind the scenes and in front of the camera to encourage the kind of things that I know from my experience the viewers want. I want to make the unpredictable kind of television happen more. But I have to be a reporter. I accepted the job with the promise that the work I do overseas, and in the United States, in talking about people who need a voice and need to be heard — that work will not stop.

TV Guide Magazine: You were certainly the people's choice to replace Meredith. Why do you think the Today audience likes you so much?
I would say that — almost to a fault, pretty much — what you see is what you get. Sometimes I've been accused of being too exuberant in the morning. Once, I said "Good morning" three times with a goofy smile on my face. I'm as fallible as the next person. I'm as goofy and dopey and silly and caring as people think I am. Take me or leave me.

TV Guide Magazine: When your coanchor job was announced, you said you felt like the computer nerd being asked to the prom by the high school quarterback. Does it matter to you that you're not one of the cool kids?
I think there are more nerds in the world than there are cool people, so more people might get me than you realize. I do want people to like me, but I don't want to be loved for something I'm not; I want to be loved for something I am. What I am is someone who grabs people and hugs them even if other people think that's weird. I am someone who is gong to wear her heart on her sleeve. I am someone who is going to care about stories when some people think, "Why do you bother?" My motivation is how do I reach the most people to tell the stories that matter most to them. However fallible I am as a human being, my intent is earnest and my effort is constant in the practice of providing viewers good information, which I know gives them power.

TV Guide Magazine: Do you think there's a chance Meredith will stay in the Today family?
I think Meredith can potentially be a secret weapon that we can use in a new way. Hell, maybe she'll come back and fill in for me or Matt.

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