CNN Chief Jeff Zucker's Resignation Rocks Network
Jeff Zucker has resigned as CEO of CNN after failing to disclose his relationship with Allison Gollust, CNN’s executive vice president and chief marketing officer, and the matter came up during the network’s investigation into the former anchor Chris Cuomo’s sexual harassment case, Remy Rumin reported for the New York Times.
Photo Insert: Jeff Zucker, now the former CEO of CNN
In a statement, Gollust wrote that the relationship between the longtime colleagues “changed” during the pandemic and that she would remain at the network. Both parties are divorced.
The abrupt end of Zucker’s nine-year tenure immediately throws into flux the direction of CNN and its parent company, WarnerMedia, which is expected to be acquired later this year by Discovery Inc. in what would be one of the nation’s largest media mergers.
Some CNN talents have gone public in support of Zucker. “I am devastated,” Don Lemon told Variety. “I just think so highly of Jeff, and he is the best boss we have ever had, and one of the best things that has ever happened to CNN.”
In similar comments to The Daily Beast, Alisyn Camerota said, “We are all devastated. Jeff is beloved here. We all know we’ll never find a smarter or more compassionate boss.” A future without Zucker is something the network had been staring down for some time.
Reading between the lines, everyone’s interpretation of this is that Chris Cuomo knifed Zucker. Zucker fired Cuomo late last year over the former anchor’s deep participation in the strategic response to the sexual harassment scandal of his brother, Andrew Cuomo—after Zucker initially stood by Chris Cuomo for months when the first revelations of his involvement came to light.