Joanna Gosling thanked her colleagues at BBC News and described them as “like family” as she made her final broadcast for the channel.
The presenter and journalist, who joined the broadcaster 23 years ago in September 1999, was met with applause from inside the studio as she came off air just before 1pm.
Gosling is among those who have taken voluntary redundancy amid plans for the BBC to merge its international and domestic news channels.
She said: “Now it is just about time for me to say goodbye for the last time.
“I am signing off after 23 years at BBC News and before I go there are just a few things I wanted to say. I know this job is personal.
“We come directly into your home to tell you what is happening – good, bad, funny, sad. And in doing my work I always consider how you might be responding to the news you are hearing and what you might want to know.
“But your response to me leaving has been completely unexpected and I have been really touched by the wave of warmth and kindness from you, and I want to say thank you for all of your good wishes. It really has meant a lot to me.”
Gosling also thanked those who had shared their stories with her as well as her colleagues “past and present”.
She added: “I have learned from you, I have loved working with you and I have valued your support since I started out at 22.
“I have never failed to be impressed by the talent, skills and dedication of the people around me. We are a team, but it has felt like family.”
Becoming emotional, she added: “Lucky me to have had this great job that has never felt like a job. Thank you for having me.”
The BBC announced in July that BBC News and BBC World News are to merge to create a single 24-hour TV channel, resulting in job losses, as part of its new digital-first strategy.
David Eades and Tim Willcox are also among those leaving the corporation.
Earlier this month Gosling confirmed her departure from the BBC.
She tweeted: “You may have already heard, but I wanted to confirm, that I have decided to leave the BBC and will go off air on the 26th January.
“I am very grateful for the kind messages I’ve had from so many of you. I’m proud of my career in news. Now it is time for new beginnings.”
Gosling worked for Sky News before joining the BBC.
She is an accredited mediator and also published her first book, Simply Wonderwoman, in 2011 as a strategy for women coping with busy lives.
She was also a presenter on the Victoria Derbyshire show between 2015 and 2020 while Derbyshire underwent treatment for breast cancer which limited her appearances.
Gosling’s salary for 2021/22 was listed as between £155,000 and £159,999 in the BBC annual report.