Published November 01, 2017
Michael Oreskes resigned on Wednesday as NPR's chief editor after he was accused of sexual harassment that dated back to the 1990s, when he worked at The New York Times.
Oreskes said in a statement that he was deeply sorry to the people he hurt.
“My behavior was wrong and inexcusable, and I accept full responsibility,” Oreskes said.
He added that he informed Jarl Mohn, president and CEO of NPR, earlier in the day that he would step down.
Oreskes was initially placed on leave after the allegations of sexual assault came out in a report by The Washington Post. Mohn appointed Chris Turpin as the temporary news chief.
Two unidentified women accused Oreskes of suddenly kissing them when they were discussing job prospects with him in the 1990s, when he was Washington bureau chief of The New York Times.
Oreskes joined NPR in 2015. Another NPR employee, Rebecca Hersher, also revealed she filed a formal complaint with human resources against Oreskes for an incident shortly after he joined the company, NPR reported. She said Oreskes “hijacked” a career counseling session and turned it into an hours-long dinner.
NPR correspondent David Folkenflik tweeted NPR was told of Oreskes inappropriate behavior in Oct. 2016 by a woman who said she was harassed by the editor during his tenure at The New York Times some two decades ago.
Folkenflik said another woman felt empowered to come forward with their experiences with Oreskes following bombshell allegations against other media figures.
NPR CEO Jarl Mohn reportedly sent the staff a memo regarding sexual harassment and urged employees to file complaints against any staff member who engaged in inappropriate behavior.