Jon Meacham Leaves 'Need To Know' On PBS

04/01/2011 09:07 am ET | Updated Jun 01, 2011

Jon Meacham is leaving his role as co-host of PBS news show "Need to Know."

The former Newsweek editor and current Random House EVP had been co-hosting the show with ex-MSNBC anchor Alison Stewart since last May. The show, which has battled cancellation rumors, will now be solo-anchored by Stewart.

Meacham will "shift to essayist" on the program and launch a separate interview series called "Perspectives," according to the New York Times.

"I love Alison and the Need to Know team, but I don't think the broadcast needs me as a co-anchor," Meacham said.

Separately, Meacham was spotted this week dining with Fox News chief Roger Ailes at Manhattan media power lunch spot Michael's. Mediabistro's Lunch at Michael's columnist Diane Clehane reported spotting the pair together on Wednesday:

Random House EVP Jon Meacham and Fox News chief Roger Ailes, chowing down on burgers and fries. Jon arrived early and spent the time waiting for Ailes by chatting with the staff. We couldn't help but notice that the ex-Newsweek editor looks a lot more relaxed since leaving the struggling magazine. It's Tina Brown's problem now! Their table was clearly the center of gravity today as pretty much anyone who is anybody (read: all the suits in the room) stopped by to pay homage.

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