The Board of Directors of CBS Corp. is meeting today to determine how to move forward after allegations of sexual misconduct surfaced late last week against company Chairman and CEO Leslie Moonves. The allegations from six women spanning several decades are the focus of an article by Ronan Farrow published Friday by The New Yorker.
In the meantime, Deadline reported this morning that Moonves was considering stepping aside from his duties while the allegations against him are investigated.
A piece by The Hollywood Reporter summarizing the in-depth New Yorker report notes: “On-the-record accusers in the story include actress Illeana Douglas, writer Janet Jones, producer Christine Peters and writer Dinah Kirgo. Others also spoke out about the corporate culture at CBS and CBS News.”
As we reported last week, CBS issued a statement ahead of the publication of the New Yorker piece, stating: “The Independent Directors of CBS have committed to investigating claims that violate the Company’s clear policies in that regard. Upon the conclusion of that investigation, which involves recently reported allegations that go back several decades, the Board will promptly review the findings and take appropriate action.”
Farrow writes in the New Yorker: “Six women who had professional dealings with him told me that, between the nineteen-eighties and the late aughts, Moonves sexually harassed them. Four described forcible touching or kissing during business meetings, in what they said appeared to be a practiced routine. Two told me that Moonves physically intimidated them or threatened to derail their careers. All said that he became cold or hostile after they rejected his advances and that they believed their careers suffered as a result.”
Ileana Douglas is quoted in the New Yorker saying: “What happened to me was a sexual assault, and then I was fired for not participating.”