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Kelly Ripa Picks Ryan Seacrest to Co-Host Live After Yearlong Search

People logo People 5/1/2017 BRITTANY KING
© ABC

Kelly Ripa has picked Ryan Seacrest to co-host Live!, according to CNN’s Brian Stelter.

After months of speculation, the Live with Kelly host is set to announce on Monday morning that Ryan Seacrest will be taking up the seat next to her on the popular morning program, CNN reports, citing multiple sources.

Since former co-host Michael Strahan, 45, announced last May that he was leaving his Live post to become a full-time co-anchor on Good Morning America, Ripa, 46, has welcomed multiple A-list faces to the show as guest co-hosts, including Jimmy Kimmel, Anderson Cooper, Andy Cohen, Jussie Smollett, Neil Patrick Harris and Dwyane Wade.

In June, PEOPLE reported that the search for the permanent position was narrowed down to eight contenders, and in October, a surprise contender joined the race when teacher Richard Curtis wowed Live fans with his charm and poise, despite not having a career in the entertainment industry. Curtis ended up scoring an invite for a return ticket to serve as Ripa’s co-pilot.

In September, sources told PEOPLE Ripa remained “committed” to finding a new co-host, all in due time, but wasn’t going to be “rushed, and so she is happy to take her time to make sure that the chemistry is right.”

As for Seacrest, he’s no stranger to hosting duties. From American Idol to New Year’s Rockin’ Eve to his hit radio show On Air with Ryan Seacrest, the 42-year-old has done it all. And he’s been no stranger to Live’s guest co-hosting chair as he sat by Ripa’s side multiple times throughout her search.

Live with Kelly airs weekdays (check local listings).

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