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Who is Kristen Welker? Meet the moderator of the final Trump-Biden debate

NBC White House correspondent Kristen Welker will be the moderator of what was initially supposed to be the third debate.

NBC News White House correspondent and "Weekend TODAY" co-host Kristen Welker will serve as the moderator for the final presidential debate Thursday between President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden.

This was scheduled to be the third debate, but the second one on Oct. 15 was canceled after Trump contracted COVID-19 and later declined to take part in a virtual town hall debate.

Welker released the six topics for the debate last week through the nonpartisan Commission on Presidential Debates. They are “Fighting COVID-19,” “American Families,” “Race in America,” “Climate Change,” “National Security,” and “Leadership.”

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This will be Welker's second stint as a debate moderator, but her first doing it alone. She co-moderated a Democratic presidential debate in November 2019.

Welker, 44, is a Philadelphia native who graduated cum laude from Harvard with a degree in American history, according to NBC. She also interned at TODAY while in college.

Credit: NBC Universal
In this image provided by NBC, Kristen Welker appears outside the White House where she serves as a correspondent.

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After stints at TV stations in Rhode Island and California, Welker became a reporter and anchor at her hometown NBC station WCAU in 2005.

She moved up to NBC News in 2010, working as a reporter on both general news and election coverage. Welker was added to the White House beat in 2011, according to NBC. 

Welker's prominence rose as she covered the Hillary Clinton presidential campaign in 2016, then continued to cover the White House after Trump's victory.

“Every time I walk through the White House gates, if you don't stop and take it in and recognize that you are a witness to history, it's time for you, frankly, to get a new job. Because every minute of everything that we're covering is history-making and, frankly, remarkable," Welker told People magazine in August.

She joined fellow White House correspondent Peter Alexander as co-host of "Weekend TODAY" in January. Welker was congratulated by Trump when she was announced as the co-host, saying the network "made a very wise decision."

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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