SVP of Talent and Business Affairs, Barbara Fedida, has been fired by ABC News following allegations she made racist remarks to staffers. Last month, The Huffington Post ran a report about Fedida's behavior at ABC News where she was accused of making bigoted remarks about Black employees. It resulted in the Mouse House paying millions of dollars in confidential settlements with former talent and staff.
Fedida, who is responsible for the recruitment and hiring of on-air talent, such as ABC's Sara Haines, Tom Llamas, Meghan McCain, and Ginger Zee, along with John Dickerson, Seth Doane, Jeff Glor, and Erica Hill while she was at CBS. Fedida is also behind Michael Strahan joining Good Morning America; she also gave on-air assignments to Black anchors T.J. Holmes and Marcus Moore, and Eva Pilgrim, who is Korean-American, and The View's Sunny Hostin, who she allegedly called "low rent".
In an email to staff, Walt Disney Television chairman Peter Rice informed employees Fedida wouldn't be back after an investigation conduced by outside counsel. It showed Fedida did in fact make racist remarks, but denied finding evidence on claims millions of dollars were sent due to HR complaints made about Fedida, the Los Angeles Times reports. Rice stated in the email,
The investigation substantiated that Ms. Fedida did make some of the unacceptable racially insensitive comments attributed to her. It also substantiated that Ms. Fedida managed in a rough manner and, on occasion, used crass and inappropriate language.
Rice went on to say,
Lastly, the investigation found no basis for the claims that Ms. Fedida was the subject of dozens of HR complaints and that ABC News spent millions of dollars in confidential settlements related to Ms. Fedida, as alleged in some press accounts. Although Ms. Fedida made contributions to the organization over the 20-year span of her career, in light of the overall findings, we have determined that she can no longer serve in a leadership role and will not be returning to ABC News.