Producer L.A. Reid and season 2 winner Tate Stevens celebrate at Fox’s “The X Factor” Season Finale – Night 2 at CBS Televison City on December 20, 2012 in Los Angeles

*L.A. Reid ended his “X Factor” stint with a victory on Thursday.

“You know I cried tonight. I was in tears,” said the longtime music exec of his over-25 team member Tate Stevens. The 37-year-old country crooner from Raymore, MO bested Simon Cowell’s girl group Fifth Harmony and Britney Spears’ Carly Rose Sonenclar to become the Season 2 champ.

“I don’t have a happy dance, but it’s happening in my head, along with this big collage of emotions that are going on,” Reid told us immediately after the live broadcast in Los Angeles.

Below, Reid, who announced that he would not return to the FOX show next season, says even a win for his protégé won’t change his mind about leaving.