CNN President Jeff Zucker who is married resigned over romantic relationship with a married colleague Allison Gollust
Zucker, who has headed the cable network for nine years, told colleagues in a memo that his relationship with Allison Gollust
”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 wrote in the memo
“I acknowledged the relationship evolved in recent years. I was required to disclose it when it began but I didn’t. I was wrong. As a result, I am resigning today”
Gollust is CNN’s Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer Allison Gollust came up during a probe into allegations of sexual misconduct by former CNN host Chris Cuomo
Gollust in confirmed in a a statement confirmed: “Jeff and I have been close friends and professional partners for over 20 years. Recently our relationship changed during COVID”
CNN’s head Jeff Zucker resigned from the network Wednesday after he didn’t disclose a romantic relationship with another senior executive at the company
Zucker, 56, who has headed the cable network for nine years, told colleagues in a memo that his relationship with CNN’s Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer Allison Gollust came up during a probe into Chris Cuomo’s alleged sexual misconduct.
In a shock move, Zucker resigned Wednesday, citing a “consensual relationship” that he never disclosed.
“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 wrote in the memo, shared on Twitter by CNN’s Chief Media Correspondent Brian Stelter
Zucker, who also serves as the chairman of WarnerMedia news and sports, said in a statement: “I acknowledged the relationship evolved in recent years,” he wrote. “I was required to disclose it when it began but I didn’t. I was wrong. As a result, I am resigning today.”
His office paramour, Allison Gollust, who previously worked as former New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s communications director, released a statement confirming the relationship: “Jeff and I have been close friends and professional partners for over 20 years. Recently our relationship changed during COVID,” Gollust wrote.
Jeff Zucker was hired at CNN Worldwide in January 2013 after working his way up from a producer on “Today” to the CEO and president of NBC. Gollust joined CNN in 2013 after leaving NBC, where she and Zucker had worked together for 15 years.
In April 2017, Page Six reported public blowout between the pair that left ‘media bigwigs gobsmacked.’ At the Hollywood Reporter’s 35 Most Powerful People in NY Media party, CNN chief Jeff Zucker and the cable network’s veteran publicist Allison Gollust were seen in a heated exchange, right in the middle of a party full of media power players.
During the party held at the new Seagram Building eatery the Pool, Zucker and Gollust reportedly, suddenly began speaking intensely and making anguished hand gestures before Gollust strode purposefully away into the crowd.
Damage control at the time reported the incident as not being a fight between the pair, rather it had to do with business that spilled over from the office.
The spill according to a ‘source’ at the time, was that “It was something they were dealing with at CNN all day,” adding “it wasn’t an argument.” However to at least one baffled rival exec who witnessed the exchange, “It looked like she [Gollust], was reprimanding her husband or something.”
Former CNN host Katie Couric, in her controversial 2021 memoir, “Going There,” noted that the pair “were joined at the hip, ” adding “I had to wonder why Jeff was angling so hard to bring Allison on board. She and her husband and kids had moved into the apartment right above Jeff and Caryn’s — everyone who heard about their cozy arrangement thought it was super strange.”
In his memo of February 2, Zucker said to colleagues that he wished his tenure with CNN “had ended differently.”
“But it was an amazing run. And I loved every minute,” he wrote.
“I am grateful to the thousands of incredibly talented CNN and Turner Sports employees who helped make this such a joy for me and such. A success for all of us. I wish each of you nothing but the best in the years ahead.”
CNN’s parent company WarnerMedia, said Wednesday that an interim leadership plan will be announced “shortly.”