CNN boss Jeff Zucker resigns, failed to disclose relationship

Jeff Zucker, President of CNN, was interviewed during a Financial Times Future of News event March 22, 2018 in New York.

Don Emmert | AFP | Getty Images

CNN President Jeff Zucker resigned Wednesday after revealing he failed to disclose a relationship with a top-ranking colleague who previously served as communications director to former New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo.

Zucker said in his resignation announcement that he failed to admit, as he should have done, that he had that relationship with CNN executive Allison Gollust during a probe of then-network host Chris Cuomo and Cuomo’s role in advising his brother Andrew during a sexual harassment scandal.

“As part of the investigation into Chris Cuomo’s tenure at CNN, I was asked about a consensual relationship with my closest colleague, someone I have worked with for more than 20 years,” Zucker said in a statement.

“I acknowledged the relationship evolved in recent years. I was required to disclose it when it began but I did not. I was wrong,” said Zucker, 56, who is divorced.

“As a result, I am resigning today.”

“I came to CNN on January 28, 2013. Together, we had nine great years. I certainly wish my tenure here had ended differently. But it was an amazing run. And I loved every minute.”

CNN declined to comment when contacted by CNBC.

Allison Gollust, who was not identified by name in Zucker’s statement, is the executive vice president and chief marketing officer for CNN Worldwide.

In a statement read on CNN by Brian Stelter, the network’s media reporter, Gollust said, “Jeff and I have been close friends and professional partners for over 20 years.”

“Recently, our relationship changed during Covid. I regret that we did not disclose it at the right time. I’m incredibly proud of my time at CNN and look forward to continuing the great work we do everyday,” Gollust said.

Jason Kilar, CEO of CNN’s parent WarnerMedia, in a statement to employees, said,Team – I have accepted Jeff Zucker’s resignation as Chairman of WarnerMedia News and Sports, and President of CNN Worldwide. “

“We thank Jeff for his contributions over the past 9 years. We will be announcing an interim leadership plan shortly,” Kilar said. “Both of these organizations are at the top of their respective games and are well prepared for their next chapters.”

– Additional reporting by CNBCs Alex Sherman

This is breaking news. Please check back for updates.

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