Matt Lauer, the longtime newsman and face of the “Today Show” was fired from NBC News on Wednesday after an employee filed a detailed complaint regarding Lauer’s alleged sexual misconduct in the workplace.
NBC News Chairman Andrew Lack sent a memo to employees on Wednesday revealing that the complaint was filed by a colleague of Lauer’s, on Monday, inciting the company to investigate the claim. Lack called Lauer’s actions, a “clear violation of our company’s standards,” NBC News reports.
“While it is the first complaint about his behavior in the over 20 years he’s been at NBC News, we were also presented with reason to believe this may not have been an isolated incident,” Lack continued.
Savannah Guthrie, Lauer’s co-host, announced the news at the top of Wednesday’s show while sitting alongside colleague Hoda Kotb.
“As I’m sure you can imagine we are devastated and we are still processing all of this,” Guthrie said.
“For the moment all we can say is we are heartbroken. I’m heartbroken for Matt, he is my dear, dear friend and my partner and he is beloved by many, many people here. And I’m heartbroken for the brave colleague who came forward to tell her story and any other women who have their own stories to tell, she said on the verge of tears,” Guthrie said on the verge of tears.
“How do you reckon your love for someone with the revelation that they behaved badly? I don’t know the answer to that,” she said.
“Today” employees were made aware of the decision moments before the show went live, The New York Times reports. Lauer’s dismissal comes as several high-profile celebrities have been called to the carpet over sexual assault and sexual harassment allegations.