A powerful ABC News executive said to be infamous for her insensitive comments has been placed on administrative leave amid a network probe of her alleged misconduct, according to a report.
Senior Vice President Barbara Fedida’s disturbing declarations included a remark made when she was involved in contract renewal negotiations with “Good Morning America” star anchor Robin Roberts. When Fedida and her colleagues were discussing how Roberts wanted more money, the report alleges Fedida said it wasn’t as if ABC was asking her to “pick cotton.”
Her pattern of bad behavior includes racist comments made to people who report to her, according to the sources who spoke to the Huffington Post.
Fedida, who oversees hiring and diversity programs for the network, has been in the crosshairs of more than a dozen human resources complaints. ABC News even hired an executive coach for her after she was at the center of an HR probe in 2016, according to the report.
Fedida was also have said to sneer at a company lunch held following mass shooting incidents in the US, where she allegedly asked the attendees which ABC News employee would be most likely to be an active shooter.
Stunned ABC News staffers who were aware of the probe were shocked the 2016 HR investigation did not lead to her demise at the network.
The Huffington Post report cited interviews with 34 sources over a six-month period, including current and former ABC News staffers and talent.
“There are deeply disturbing allegations in this story that we need to investigate, and we have placed Barbara Fedida on administrative leave while we conduct a thorough and complete investigation,” ABC News said in a statement to HuffPost. “These allegations do not represent the values and culture of ABC News, where we strive to make everyone feel respected in a thriving, diverse and inclusive workplace.”
Fedida did not return a phone message left by a New York Post reporter.