On Wednesday, Today Show anchor Matt Lauer was fired from NBC News following an employee complaint about “inappropriate sexual behavior in the workplace.”

The shocking news was delivered by Lauer’s co-host Savannah Guthrie who said she was “devastated” by the news, considering Lauer a close friend and colleague, having worked side-by-side with him for five years.

matt lauer Michael Loccisano Getty

Lauer, 59, became co-host of The Today Show in 1997, and is the latest high-profile media figure to fall spectacularly from grace. His firing comes on the heels of Charlie Rose’s exit from CBS News following sexual misconduct claims. Louis C.K., Kevin Spacey and Harvey Weinstein are among those brought down by sexual assault and misconduct allegations.

Lauer’s ouster comes ahead of The New York Times and Variety’s planned reports on serious sexual harassment claims against the once celebrated journalist. In a letter to staff, NBC News chairman Andrew Lack noted that “we were also presented with reason to believe this may not have been an isolated incident.”

Lack’s full statement reads:

Dear Colleagues,

On Monday night, we received a detailed complaint from a colleague about inappropriate sexual behavior in the workplace by Matt Lauer. It represented, after serious review, a clear violation of our company’s standards. As a result, we’ve decided to terminate his employment. While it is the first complaint about his behavior in the over twenty years he’s been at NBC News, we were also presented with reason to believe this may not have been an isolated incident.

Our highest priority is to create a workplace environment where everyone feels safe and protected, and to ensure that any actions that run counter to our core values are met with consequences, no matter who the offender.

We are deeply saddened by this turn of events. But we will face it together as a news organization — and do it in as transparent a manner as we can. To that end, Noah and I will be meeting with as many of you as possible throughout the day today to answer your questions.


Lauer is yet to release any statement following his firing.


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