“Welcome to #RHONY, @EboniKWilliams!” the 52-year-old producer tweeted on Thursday, October 8.
Williams, 37, also confirmed her role in a statement to TMZ on Tuesday.
“NYC is filled with successful and dynamic Black women. I’m excited to join this legendary franchise as the first Black housewife,” the TV host said. “Can’t wait to share a slice of life in this city that hasn’t been seen before. Anyone who’s aware of my work knows I don’t hold back. I’m going to keep it just as real here as I do everywhere else.”
Us Weekly previously confirmed that Bershan Shaw filmed scenes for the upcoming season 13 of RHONY. The network has yet to publicly comment on Shaw’s role for the upcoming season. Ramona Singer, Leah McSweeney, Sonja Morgan and Luann de Lesseps are also all returning for season 13 after Tinsley Mortimer and Dorinda Medley’s departures.
While Mortimer, 44, left the show midseason to move to Chicago with her fiancé, Scott Kluth, Medley, 55, recently admitted that her exit wasn’t a “mutual” decision.
“I was ready to go back. I was excited about going back. I was planning on going back, and I thought I would have a great year,” she told her former costar Bethenny Frankel on the Tuesday, October 6, episode of the “Just B” podcast before admitting she had a tough season 12. “I probably should have taken a year off. I had a rough season, but that’s what we do as Housewives. We have good seasons, we have bad seasons. We come back, and we change it up.”
Both Cohen and McSweeney, 38, have been vocal about wanting to add more diversity to RHONY. While The Real Housewives of Atlanta and The Real Housewives of Potomac have had predominantly Black casts since their respective premieres, The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills added its first Black woman, Garcelle Beauvais, for season 10.
“I hope that there’s not only diversity of race but an even deeper diversity of where someone lives or what their interests are,” McSweeney told Page Six in August. “I hope that there’s just more diversity all across the board because New Yorkers are not a monolith, obviously. I think that it is gonna head in that direction.”