A longtime Fox News host who exited the cable channel in 2016 resigned as chair of the board of Miss America. The New York Post’s Page Six reports that the resignation of Gretchen Carlson from the post follows reports of behind-the-scenes feuding over the elimination of the pageant’s swimsuit competition.
“The former Miss America was part of the leadership group that cut the swimsuit competition, prompting some state pageants to call for her and the rest of the board to step down,” The Post reports. “Reps from nearly two dozen state pageants signed a petition last July calling for the board’s resignations, while 30 former Miss Americas signed their own letter expressing their full support of Carlson.”
Carlson said in a statement that she was “extremely proud of the work we have collectively done.”
Carlson, who was crowned the 1989 Miss America, was with CBS News before becoming the co-host of Fox News’ “Fox & Friends” in 2005. After leaving Fox in 2016 she sued the company alleging sexual harassment by Fox News Chairman and CEO Roger Ailes, who was eventually forced to resign.
In her statement on her Miss America resignation, Carlson said: “With a promising network partnership, the time is ideal to give new leadership the opportunity to move forward with what has been accomplished. Miss America will always be a part of who I am and I will enthusiastically watch as the organization continues to grow and succeed.”
The Miss America Pageant recently signed a new TV deal with NBC.
Carlson will reportedly be replaced by Shantel Krebs, a former South Dakota secretary of state, and will stay on to advise the board during the transition.