NBC News Chairman Andy Lack will leave his post by the end of the month as part of a corporation-wide shake-up, NBCUniversal’s chief executive announced in a Monday memo to the news organization.
NBCUniversal CEO Jeff Shell wrote that the company’s news organizations — NBC News, MSNBC and CNBC — will be folded into one group, which will be overseen by NBCUniversal International Group chairman Cesar Conde. Top executives who will now report to Conde include NBC News President Noah Oppenheim, MSNBC chief Phil Griffin, and CNBC chairman Mark Hoffman. Lack planed to depart from NBC News after the 2020 presidential election, according to Deadline.
“Cesar is a well-respected, strategic leader who has succeeded in multiple roles at NBCUniversal since joining the company in 2013,” Shell said in a statement. “Most recently, Cesar has overseen unprecedented growth at Telemundo, which under his leadership has become the number one Spanish-language network, and through its news division has played a critical role in the expansion of news operations, breaking news coverage and trailblazing political reporting. Cesar’s valuable and relevant experience leading broadcast networks and news divisions, combined with his high degree of integrity and proven management skills, make him the right person to lead our news group into the future.”
Lack came under fire following a 2018 New York Times report alleging that NBC News covered up a rape accusation against now-convicted rapist Harvey Weinstein by refusing to greenlight a Ronan Farrow expose. Farrow ultimately took the story to the New Yorker and later won a Pulitzer Prize with The Times for their reporting on Weinstein. “One of the men tasked with reviewing Farrow’s reporting—a key executive under Lack—was himself an accused sexual harasser, multiple sources told The Daily Beast. Under Lack’s tenure, NBCUniversal paid the accuser nearly $1 million for her silence,” the Daily Beast reported at the time. Lack denied the claims, stating Farrow’s reporting wasn’t ready to be published at the time and said he was not involved in any effort to ban the report’s release.
In a separate Daily Beast report, Lack was accused of ignoring several allegations of sexual harassment while he was CEO of the music label Sony BMG.