Claire Byrne will present Radio 1’s key mid-morning Today slot, RTÉ has announced. Byrne will become the permanent replacement to Seán O’Rourke from Monday.
The two-hour current affairs show, which runs from 10am to noon on weekdays, has been presented on an acting basis by Sarah McInerney since O’Rourke’s departure in May.
Byrne is currently the presenter of Claire Byrne Live on RTÉ One, which RTÉ said would return in September, and will also be known to Radio 1 listeners as host of the News at One.
“Claire has vast experience across all RTÉ platforms but began her career with radio presenting the Late Debate and subsequently, Saturday with Claire Byrne. She brings that experience, a natural curiosity, focus and real integrity to the Today programme,” said head of Radio 1 Peter Woods.
Mr Woods thanked McInerney “for her considerable input on this station since last May” and said he looked forward to continuing to work with her. Details of her next project will be announced in the coming weeks, RTÉ said.
“I am truly delighted, honoured and humbled to be taking on this new role at RTÉ Radio 1,” said Byrne.
“My job will be to represent the voices of the RTÉ Radio 1 listeners, and to always ask the questions they want answered at this most critical time.”
Byrne, from Mountrath in Co Laois, joined RTÉ from Newstalk, having begun her broadcasting career in radio. She worked for the BBC in the Channel Islands before becoming news editor with Channel 103FM, then moved to TV3 as a news anchor on breakfast programme Ireland AM. She later had stints in London with Channel 5 and the ITN News Channel.
A former winner of the Irish Film and Television Academy’s TV personality of the year award, she is one of the highest-paid presenters at RTÉ, ranking sixth in terms of earnings in 2016, the latest year for which figures have been published.