CNN's 'Early Start' Anchor Zoraida Sambolin Exits

The host, who joined the network in 2011, plans to return to Chicago.
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Zoraida Sambolin

Zoraida Sambolin, co-anchor on CNN's Early Start, is exiting the network, The Hollywood Reporter has confirmed.

Her final day will be Dec. 13.

"This past year has been full of challenges, blessings and a tremendous amount of reflection," Sambolin said in a note to colleagues. "I have come to realize that in order for me to be happy, my family has to be my first priority. I love my job and the gifted and committed people I've had an opportunity to work with but life is beckoning me back to Chicago."

TVNewser was first to report the anchor's exit. 

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Sambolin joined the cable news network from Chicago's NBC 5 in November 2011 to co-anchor the 5-7 a.m. morning block. She currently hosts Early Start along with anchor John Berman.

This past May, she revealed on the air plans to undergo a double mastectomy after being diagnosed with breast cancer. In November, she appeared on Piers Morgan Live to detail her recovery from the procedure. "I called cancer a bit of a blessing, because it puts your life in perspective. You think about things that you never really thought about before," she told Morgan.

"Zoraida Sambolin is one of the best journalists in the business," a CNN spokesperson said in a statement about the anchor's exit. "Her insightful reporting, kind nature, strength and resilience are universally admired. Although we will miss her, we understand and support her decision and wish her and her family only the best."

Sambolin also stated in her note that she hopes to "continue to raise awareness about breast cancer and help raise funds to find a cure."