Miss America officials resign, 1 apologizes to ex-winner

26 December, 2017, 01:02 | Author: Regina Lloyd
  • Miss America CEO resigns amid leaked fat shaming email scandal

The top leadership of the Miss America Organisation has resigned, sweeping out officials implicated in an email scandal that targeted past pageant winners for abuse based on their appearance, intellect and sex lives.

President and COO Josh Randle and board Chairman Lynn Weidner have also stepped down. "The Board thanks Lynn and Sam for many years of tireless work for, and significant financial support to, both the Miss America Organization and thousands of young women who received millions of dollars of educational scholarships from the Organization as a direct result of their efforts".

Haskell said in a statement Friday that he would abide by the suspension, but denounced the Huffington Post article that revealed the internal emails as "unkind and untrue".

The emails included one that used a vulgar term for female genitalia to refer to past Miss America winners, one that wished that a particular former Miss America had died and others that speculated about how many sex partners Hagan has had.

Miss America 1998 Kate Shindle and 1989 Miss America Gretchen Carlson released a joint statement on Saturday, calling for the rest of the Board of Directors to step down.

Randle, responding to a 2015 email in which Haskell had written demeaningly about the former pageant victor, wrote, "She's a healthy one!" the Huffington Post reported.

Miss America's Board of Directors announced Haskell's suspension and a pending investigation into his emails on December 23.

Miss America 2013 Mallory Hagan, who turned 29 Saturday, was a subject of some of the worst of the emails between Haskell and other members of the organization. Mr. Haskell's resignation is effective immediately, while Mr. Randle and Mr. Weidner will remain for a few weeks to help with a leadership transition.

Friedman ended the email with, "P.S".

"It appears we are the only ones!"

Republican Sen. -elect Chris Brown, who represents the city as part of the Second Legislative District, said, "This is the right move for everyone involved including the image of Atlantic City, considering the pageant was created and thrived becoming synonymous with Atlantic City for nearly a century". On Friday, after he was suspended, he acknowledged he made "a mistake of words". Weidner and Randle could not be reached for comment. She said the emails had derailed her career and negatively impacted her reputation.

In an exchange with telecast lead writer Lewis Friedman, Haskell wrote, "Not a single day passes that I am not told some terrible story about Mallory".

"For the longest time, I've tried to explain to people around me that this is happening or these things are being said", Hagan told the Today show on Friday. "I felt validated in my feelings for the last couple of years".


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