Katie Couric Insists Many Ignored ‘Inappropriate Behavior’ At CNN After Jeff Zucker Resigns

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Katie Couric
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Katie Couric, who previously worked with both Jeff Zucker and Allison Gollust, said the ‘nature of their relationship’ made her ‘uncomfortable.’

Katie Couric is speaking out after her former producer, Jeff Zucker, resigned as the president of CNN Worldwide. Zucker, who held the position for nine years, announced he was stepping down on Wednesday (February 2) for not disclosing his relationship with CNN colleague, Allison Gollust. The next day, Couric shared a statement through Katie Couric Media, saying many in the industry “turned a blind eye to inappropriate behavior” between the Zucker and Gollust.

Katie Couric spoke out after her former producer Jeff Zucker resigned from CNN over an undisclosed relationship with a colleague. (MediaPunch/Shutterstock)

“I worked with Jeff Zucker for many years at NBC and later on my talk show. He was a talented and energetic producer,” Couric’s statement read. “I’ve also known Allison Gollust since my days at the TODAY show. I’ve wondered about the nature of their relationship, but I do know, as I wrote in my memoir Going There, that it made me uncomfortable. It seems their colleagues and the media at large turned a blind eye to inappropriate behavior.”

In her October 2021 memoir, Going There, Couric went into detail how Zucker, after he was appointed executive producer of her daytime talk show Katie, pushed for Gollust to oversee publicity on the show.  “They were joined at the hip,” Couric wrote. “The problem was, we’d already hired a PR person for the show. Jeff asked me to meet with her anyway.” Couric said she questioned Zucker’s motives at the time. “[Allison] and her husband and kids had moved into the apartment right above Jeff and Caryn’s [Zucker’s now ex-wife] — everyone who heard about the cozy arrangement thought it was super-strange. By that point, Caryn had become a close friend and it made me really uncomfortable.”

Jeff Zucker
Jeff Zucker said he resigned for not disclosing his relationship with CNN colleague, Allison Gollust. (Erik Pendzich/Shutterstock)

Zucker’s memo to CNN employees regarding his resignation said the decision came following the investigation into CNN anchor Chris Cuomo, who was accused of aiding his brother Andrew Cuomo with his sexual misconduct defense. “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. “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.”

In a separate memo to employees, Gollust admitted her involvement. “Jeff and I have been close friends and professional partners for over 20 years,” she wrote. “Recently, our relationship changed during COVID. I regret that we didn’t 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.”

 

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