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TV Bulletin Board (Tues., Sept. 7) -- DioGuardi, Westin out, Oprah in -- and going out

Subtract Kara DioGuardi, Ellen DeGeneres and Simon Cowell -- and this Idol group shot from last season is still current. Fox photo

Judge Kara DioGuardi's long-rumored ouster from American Idol became official over the weekend. As with Ellen DeGeneres, though, Fox is pretending it was her decision.

DioGuardi says in a publicity release that "I felt like I won the lottery when I joined American Idol two years ago, but I feel like now is the best time to leave Idol . . . I look forward to my next challenge, and want to thank everyone who has supported me."

One who didn't back her is restored executive producer Nigel Lythgoe, who has returned to that realm after two seasons as head judge and maestro of Fox's So You Think You Can Dance. Lythgoe's name just happens to be missing from among the four executives wishing DiGuardi well and saying they'll miss her. Typical is this prepared statement from Fox alternative programming president Mike Darnell, who says, "Kara was a great addition to our Idol family. I've been fortunate to get to know her well, and have always been amazed by her eye for talent and her commitment to developing and mentoring artists. She will be missed, and we wish her continued success."

Among last season's Idol judges, only Randy Jackson apparently will be among the living when the show returns for a 10th season in January. Lythgoe, a foe of the four-judge system, is expected to reduce that number to a trio, with names such as Jennifer Lopez, Steven Tyler, Shania Twain, Elton John and Harry Connick Jr. still being floated as possible replacements.

***ABC News president David Westin will be leaving that post at the end of this year after a reign that began in March 1997.

Westin isn't leaving completely by choice either after presiding over a 25 percent work force reduction -- roughly 400 employees -- in 2010. ABC's owner, the Walt Disney Company, remains displeased with the news division's profit margins, according to a report in The New York Times.

In a Monday evening email to staffers released by ABC, Westin said in part, "I've always admired those few who know when it's time to move on. This is the right time for me. Over the last nine months, we've put in place new anchors on all of our programs (including Diane Sawyer on World News and George Stephanopoulos on Good Morning America). At the same time, we went through a very difficult transformation made necessary by changes in our business and its economics . . . As rewarding as I've found my time here, there are some other things I want to do professionally -- things that I cannot explore while fulfilling my responsibilities here."

***The Kennedy Center Honors have announced their latest list of inductees, with Oprah Winfrey and Paul McCartney among those making the cut. They'll be joined by Merle Haggard, composer/lyricist Jerry Herman and choreographer/dancer/director Bill T. Jones for a ceremony to be telecast Dec. 28th on CBS.

Winfrey's induction comes while she presides over the 25th and final season of her syndicated talk show. CBS has taped and telecast the Kennedy Center Honors in each year since their debut 33 years ago. This year's ceremony is scheduled for December 5th.