Jason DeRusha's replacement has been found.
A.J. Hilton, who grew up in Minnesota, will become the new co-anchor of "WCCO This Morning" and "WCCO Mid-Morning," starting June 27.
The high-profile slot on WCCO-TV opened up when DeRusha unexpectedly announced last month that he is leaving the job for a new adventure. He, however, will be pitching in occasionally as a special correspondent.
Hilton attended Apple Valley High School and the University of Minnesota. He started his broadcasting career at KSAX in Alexandria, Minn. For the past six years, he has been at the Fox affiliate in Nashville.
"It's a great privilege to work where I grew up watching the news," Hilton said in a statement. "Coming home to Minnesota is not only full circle for me, but my wife and I are excited to have our young son grow up around the things and places we love — from the state fair to the lakes, fall weather to sports. I can't wait to be part of a community that continues to evolve and the fabric that makes Minnesota special."
Hilton will instantly become one of the most high-profile Black broadcasters in the Twin Cities. The rest of the morning team, which includes co-anchor Heather Brown and meteorologist Riley O'Conner, will remain intact.
"We are thrilled to welcome A.J. to WCCO and have him join our outstanding team of journalists," said news director Kari Patey. "His positive energy is as infectious as is his passion for our community."