Wednesday, 18 July, 2018

Miss America elects Gretchen Carlson as new chair after email scandal

Astrid Stawiarz  Getty Images
Gretchen Carlson will serve as chair of the Miss America Organization board of directors Astrid Stawiarz Getty Images Gretchen Carlson will serve as chair of the Miss America Organization board of directors
Stacy Diaz | 12 January, 2018, 19:19

To right the ship, the organization is turning to a number of former Miss America winners, including 1989 victor Carlson, who became a prominent voice against workplace sexual harassment after suing the parent company of her former employer, Fox News.

The announcement comes days after three board members resigned and former Miss America titleholders, including 2013's Mallory Hagan, called for the organization's entire board of directors to be replaced following a leak of derogatory and sexist emails from CEO Sam Haskell and others.

Carlson's new appointment marks the first time in the pageants near century long history that a former victor has served as leader. "In the end, we all want a strong, relevant Miss America and we appreciate the existing board taking the steps necessary to quickly begin stabilizing the organization for the future".

The Miss America beauty pageant has chosen a former victor as its chairperson for the first time after a scandal over leaked emails. Shindle also serves as president of the Actors' Equity Association, making her exactly the sort of accomplished and well-rounded woman who should be representing Miss America.

Board member Tammy Haddad and former scriptwriter Lewis Friedman also made eyebrow-raising comments over email.

CEO Sam Haskell resigned from the company on December 23, in addition to former chair Lynn Weidner and Tammy Haddad, a member.

The former leader of the Miss America organization is being replaced by one of her biggest critics.

In 2016, Carlson sued her former boss, the late Roger Ailes, alleging harassment and retaliation at the network.

In a statement announcing her appointment as chairperson, the organisation said: "Most previously serving Directors have resigned from the Board". They've spoken: Gretchen Carlson is their new pageant mom.

Haskell, Haddad and several other board members resigned after the emails became public.