Gayle King Latest to Exit OWN

Exit of Oprah Winfrey's best friend appears to be amicable

Oprah Winfrey's best friend is leaving her network to join CBS's "Early Show" — but Gayle King's exit from OWN looks to be amicable.

"We are so happy for Gayle's opportunity of a lifetime," OWN presidents Sheri Salata and Erik Logan said in a statement. "She’ll be a fantastic host for the new morning show on CBS and we wish her all the best. Although her show will not continue on OWN, we look forward to her joining us from time-to-time as her schedule allows."

Also read: CBS Adds Charlie Rose, Gayle King in Morning Show Reshuffle

The last episode of OWN's "The Gayle King Show" will air Thursday.

King's exit follows several other high-profile departures from the network, which has burned through money and executives while earning fewer viewers than Discovery Health, the network it replaced at the start of the year.

Also read: Is Oprah Winfrey's OWN Killing Itself With Kindness?

But the other departures were by executives, and King's exit, notably, is for an opportunity to join a much-larger network.

Winfrey named herself permanent CEO and chief creative officer in July, replacing Christina Norman. Logan and Salata were named co-presidents at the same time. Robin Schwartz, the network's previous president, left well before the network launched after 10 months on the job. 

Last week, Discovery announced the exit of Peter Liguori, the programming executive who served as OWN's interim CEO for two months between Norman's exit and Winfrey's taking the CEO title.