Best friends forever! In an exclusive interview with Closer Weekly, Dr. Oz opened up about his relationship with famed news anchor Katie Couric — and it’s safe to say the America Inside Out With Katie Couric host has had an impact on him since her days with the Today show.

“Katie has always inspired me. Even before I did television — I still operate as a surgeon at Columbia University — I would go to the Today show with her and [former Today anchor] Matt [Lauer] and we would play with robotic devices. I would show them how the new technologies worked and she was a joy to talk to,” Dr. Oz recalled at the NYC premiere of her new National Geographic show — which took place at the Titus Theater at Museum of Modern Art — last week.

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“I was nobody — I was a professor at Columbia, but she would nurture me and makes her guests feel like a million dollars,” he continued. “She reads us so well and made it easy for us to talk to her. She’s a very talented woman. It’s hard to teach that.” Because of this, The Dr. Oz Show host was happy to come support her latest career endeavor.

“Katie is a dear friend,” he gushed. “I’m proud of her for tackling topics that have created so much acrimony in the environment.” According to an event press release, “In the six-part documentary series, Katie Couric invites her audience to hear directly from Americans facing real challenges with the hope that viewers will form a deeper understanding of the issues that seem to be tearing us apart.”

America Inside Out With Katie Couric airs on Wednesday nights at 10 p.m. EST on the National Geographic channel.

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