Jessica Rowe has announced her departure from Studio 10 to spend more time with family.
An emotional Rowe told viewers, “I want to be a more present mother for my girls, Allegra and Giselle. They need their mum. I want to be there in the mornings for them, to take them to school. It is something that I need to do, it is as simple as that.”
“Peter (Overton) and I have spoken a lot about this over the past six months and it has weighed
on me because this the best job that I have ever had on television. It is family. It is a job that has allowed me to find my voice and my courage again and I will never forget that.
“When I told Paul Anderson, the CEO, of my decision earlier this week, he was incredibly supportive and understood my reasons with family and the network has been nothing but supportive and said any time I’m welcome back.”
Co-presenter Joe Hildebrand was in tears as Rowe made the announcement, and Denise Drysdale and Natarsha Belling also praised her efforts.
Network Ten Chief Content Officer, Beverley McGarvey, said: “Jess has been a vital member of the Studio 10 team since day one and I want to thank her for her passion, commitment and enthusiasm over the past four years.
“Our viewers and everyone at Network Ten are going to miss Jess, but we fully understand and support her decision. Thank you Jess, for everything.”
But the news comes at a time of recent backstage headlines for the show, including on-set tension and the firing of executive producer Rob McKnight.
McKnight, whois currently locked in a legal battle with TEN today tweeted the network had been seeking to fire Rowe. However Rowe’s management denied those claims.
@rob_mcknight to be absolutely clear – Ten offered Jess a generous new contract for her to stay. Leaving @Studio10au was Jess’ choice for the reasons she so beautifully articulated on air this morning. It takes great courage to make these big decisions.
— David H H Wilson (@DavidHHWilson) March 8, 2018