Jeff Zucker Alamy Stock Photo

CNN Worldwide president Jeff Zucker resigns over relationship with colleague

In a statement to staff today, Zucker, 56, said his resignation was effective immediately.

CNN WORLDWIDE PRESIDENT Jeff Zucker has announced his resignation for failing to disclose a romantic relationship with a colleague at the US cable television network.

“I certainly wish my tenure here had ended differently,” Zucker said in a message to the network’s employees.

“But it was an amazing run. And I loved every minute.”

Zucker, 56, said his resignation was effective immediately.

As head of the cable network since 2013, Zucker was one of the most powerful media executives in the United States.

In his message, Zucker said that as part of an investigation into a CNN anchor, he was “asked about a consensual relationship with my closest colleague, someone I have worked with for more than 20 years”.

“I acknowledged the relationship evolved in recent years,” he said. “I was required to disclose it when it began but I didn’t. I was wrong. As a result, I am resigning today.”

Zucker didn’t name his colleague in the message. However, CNN has reported the relationship is with Allison Gollust, the company’s chief marketing officer.

CNN reported that, in a memo of her own today, Gollust said: “Jeff and I have been close friends and professional partners for over 20 years. Recently, our relationship changed during Covid. I regret that we didn’t disclose it at the right time.

“I’m incredibly proud of my time at CNN and look forward to continuing the great work we do every day.”

Employees at the company learned of Zucker’s sudden departure shortly after 11am EST today (4pm Irish time). 

In an email to staff sent shortly after Zucker’s, Jason Kilar, CEO of CNN parent company WarnerMedia, said: “I have accepted Jeff Zucker’s resignation as chairman of WarnerMedia News and Sports, and President of CNN Worldwide. We thank Jeff for his contributions over the past nine years.”

Kilar said an interim leadership plan will be announced shortly. 

“Both of these organisations are at the time of their respective games and are well prepared for their next chapters,” he said. 

He was named chairman of WarnerMedia News and Sports in March 2019, and has served as president of CNN Worldwide since 2013.

Zucker oversaw all WarnerMedia’s live programming, including all divisions of CNN Worldwide and Turner Sports.

At CNN, that includes the US television network CNN International, HLN and CNN’s digital properties.

His sports portfolio included Turner Sports and Bleacher Report.

Includes reporting by  © AFP 2022 and Press Association

Your Voice
Readers Comments
This is YOUR comments community. Stay civil, stay constructive, stay on topic. Please familiarise yourself with our comments policy here before taking part.
Leave a Comment
    Submit a report
    Please help us understand how this comment violates our community guidelines.
    Thank you for the feedback
    Your feedback has been sent to our team for review.

    Leave a commentcancel