An NBC source confirmed to our colleague Lisa de Moraes, and another source close to the discussions confirmed to us, that Leno (“this week’s most unpopular stand-up comic,” as Lisa put it) will do the comic keynote honors at the nationally televised event, which is traditionally attended every year by the president.

It’s a step up in terms of starpower for a dinner that in recent years has been headlined by Wanda Sykes, Craig Ferguson and Rich Little. Leno, of course, is at the white-hot center of late-night controversy, with NBC announcing this week it would oust Conan O’Brien from his 11:30 p.m. spot and return Leno to “The Tonight Show” after its failed experiment running him at 10 p.m.