Jeff Fager, the veteran govt producer of “60 Minutes,” is departing amid accusations of inappropriate conduct on the acclaimed newsmagazine.
“Jeff Fager is leaving the corporate efficient instantly,” CBS Information president David Rhodes mentioned in a memo to staffers on Wednesday.
Rhodes mentioned that Fager’s longtime No. 2, Invoice Owens, will handle the “60 Minutes” group whereas a search is underway “for a brand new govt producer of this system.”
Rhodes mentioned in his memo that “this motion at the moment shouldn’t be instantly associated to the allegations surfaced in press studies, which proceed to be investigated independently. Nevertheless, he violated firm coverage and it’s our dedication to uphold these insurance policies at each stage.”
CBS Information declined to elaborate on what “firm coverage” Fager violated. However in an announcement to CNN, Fager mentioned CBS “terminated my contract early as a result of I despatched a textual content message to one in all our personal CBS reporters demanding that she be truthful in masking the story.”
“My language was harsh and, even though journalists obtain harsh calls for for equity on a regular basis, CBS didn’t prefer it,” he mentioned within the assertion. “One such be aware shouldn’t lead to termination after 36 years, nevertheless it did.”
Allegations in opposition to Fager, reported by Ronan Farrow in The New Yorker, included undesirable touching. Fager staunchly denied the allegations.
When the story got here out in July, he mentioned Farrow’s sources — a “few folks,” he claimed — had an “axe to grind.”
However Farrow had quite a few sources, together with six former staff who mentioned that “Fager, whereas inebriated at firm events, would contact staff in ways in which made them uncomfortable.”
Farrow additionally cited “nineteen present and former staff” who mentioned Fager “allowed harassment within the division.”
In the identical story, Farrow revealed allegations about harassment and assault by CBS Company CEO Les Moonves, an in depth ally of Fager’s.
Each males had been defiant after the story was revealed. They remained of their positions whereas regulation companies employed by CBS investigated the allegations.
Farrow continued reporting. He heard from further girls who lodged severe accusations in opposition to Moonves. Farrow’s follow-up story, revealed on Sunday, additionally included a brand new allegation in opposition to Fager.
Moonves had already been in exit talks with CBS. By the top of the day on Sunday, he was formally out as CEO.
Sources at CBS Information mentioned there was a consensus that the community could not take motion within the Fager case till the Moonves case was settled. In spite of everything, Moonves was the last word boss.
On Monday, the day after the Moonves announcement, Fager was not at work — a proven fact that raised eyebrows inside “60 Minutes” and CBS Information.
On Wednesday, Rhodes’ memo invoked the identify of the corporate’s appearing CEO, Joe Ianniello.
He mentioned “Ianniello is in full assist of this determination and the transition to return.”
CNNMoney (New York) First revealed September 12, 2018: 1:42 PM ET