The U.S. bishops have elected Archbishop Timothy M. Dolan of New York as president of the U.S. bishops' conference.
The move was unprecedented, as the bishops traditionally choose the previous vice president to serve as head of the conference.
Bishop Gerald Kicanas is the conference's former vice president. He held the position 2007 – 2010.
Since a 50 percent majority is required for a candidate to be elected, the Nov. 16 vote was taken three times before a president was chosen.
The clear contenders of the 10 candidates for presidency were Archbishop Dolan and Bishop Kicanas. By the third round, the New York prelate garnered 128 votes - 54 percent, and Bishop Kicanas received 111 votes - 46 percent.
The vote for the vice president was equally divided. Archbishop Joseph Kurtz of Louisville was elected to the position with 147 votes over Archbishop Charles Chaput of Denver who garnered 91.