The Latest: Television industry women support Brokaw

Tom Brokaw,
The Associated Press

NEW YORK (AP) — The Latest on sexual harassment allegations against former NBC news anchor Tom Brokaw (all times local):

8:10 p.m.

A group of 65 women in the television industry have circulated a letter in support of NBC’s Tom Brokaw after he was accused by a former colleague of unwanted sexual advances.

The women say he has treated all of them with fairness and respect, giving them opportunities for advancement and championing successes in their careers.

Maria Shriver, Rachel Maddow, Andrea Mitchell, Kelly O’Donnell, Anne Thompson and Kristen Welker are among the women who put their names to the letter.

The women wrote that they know Brokaw “to be a man of tremendous decency and integrity.”

Brokaw denies the former colleague’s accusations.


3:15 p.m.

Responding to sexual misconduct charges, NBC’s Tom Brokaw complains of being “ambushed and then perp walked across the pages of The Washington Post and Variety as an avatar of male misogyny, taken to the guillotine and stripped of any honor and achievement I had earned in more than a half century of journalism and citizenship.”

The former NBC “Nightly News” anchor reacted angrily in an email written at 4 a.m. and sent to friends to charges that he made unwanted sexual advances on a former colleague two decades ago. The letter was first reported in the Hollywood Reporter and confirmed by The Associated Press.

Brokaw wrote that his accuser, Linda Vester, failed in her pursuit of stardom and was given the run of the Post and Variety to vent her grievances.

Vester, who worked as a war correspondent for NBC News, told the publications that that Brokaw groped her and tried to forcibly kiss her in the 1990s.

Brokaw wrote that he was “angry, hurt and unmoored from what I thought would be the final passage of my life and career.”


1:30 p.m.

A Connecticut university says former news anchor Tom Brokaw has withdrawn as commencement speaker after facing allegations of sexual harassment.

Sacred Heart University says Brokaw notified school officials of the cancellation Friday.

University president John Petillo says he respects and agrees with Brokaw’s decision to keep the focus on students at the May 13 ceremony.

A woman who worked as a war correspondent for NBC News told Variety and The Washington Post that Brokaw groped her and tried to forcibly kiss her in the 1990s.

The 78-year-old Brokaw has denied the allegations.

Brokaw will be replaced at the graduation by Linda McMahon, who serves on President Donald Trump’s cabinet as head of the Small Business Administration.

McMahon is a school donor and previously served on the Catholic university’s governing board.