Amid continuing revelations of sexual harassment and inappropriate behavior from a range of industries, NBC News has been hit with another allegation: two women have come forward with reports of unwanted advances from long-time NBC anchor Tom Brokaw.
What Brokaw is accused of
Linda Vester, a former NBC correspondent, shared her story with The Washington Post and Variety, detailing several encounters with the former anchor in the early 1990s. Vester said that Brokaw invited himself to her hotel room, twice attempted to forcibly kiss her, and once groped her in an NBC conference room.
Vester claims that she did not file a complaint at the time out of fear of retribution, noting that she chose to speak out now “because NBC has failed to hire outside counsel to investigate a genuine, long-standing problem of sexual misconduct in the news division.”
Brokaw’s response to allegations
For his part, Brokaw has denied that he was inappropriate during their meetings. In a statement released through NBC News, Brokaw said, “I met with Linda Vester on two occasions, both at her request, 23 years ago, because she wanted advice with respect to her career at NBC. The meetings were brief, cordial and appropriate, and despite Linda’s allegations, I made no romantic overtures towards her, at that time or any other.”
Accuser No. 2
Another woman, who was a 24-year-old production assistant at the time, also detailed an inappropriate encounter with Brokaw in the ‘90s. She explained that after putting her hands under his jacket and pulling her in, the anchor suggestively invited her to his office to discuss her career. Brokaw has denied the incident.
These are the first such public accusations against Brokaw, who manned the anchor desk for “Nightly News” for 22 years and also hosted “Today” and “Meet the Press.”
These accusations came to light amidst a wider investigation into NBC’s culture by The Post. Many have worried that the broadcaster has not sufficiently addressed issues of sexual harassment, despite promising to conduct a “culture assessment” following the allegations raised against and subsequent firing of anchor Matt Lauer.