Miss America Organization CEO Sam Haskell resigns amid email scandal

Posted on: December 23rd, 2017 by ABC News No Comments

Donald Kravitz/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — Miss America Organization CEO Sam Haskell resigned Saturday, two days after leaked internal emails surfaced showing him and others demeaning the appearance, intellect and personal lives of former pageant winners.

Dan Meyers, interim chairman of the Miss America Organization’s board of directors, confirmed in a statement via Twitter that the board on Saturday afternoon accepted Haskell’s resignation, “effective immediately.” The board also accepted the resignation of chairman Lynn Weidner, who Meyers said will remain on the board for up to 90 days “to facilitate a smooth transition.”

“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,” Meyers said in the statement.

A Miss America Organization spokesman confirmed to ABC News that the board also received and accepted the resignation of the president, Josh Randle, earlier Saturday. Randle will remain in his current capacity for several weeks at the board’s request to facilitate a smooth transition, the spokesman said.

Haskell’s resignation came one day after the Miss American Organization suspended him indefinitely while the board conducted “an in-depth investigation into alleged inappropriate communications and the nature in which they were obtained.”

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.”

ABC News obtained a full statement from Randle on Saturday that said his inappropriate response to an email about the appearance of 2013 Miss America Mallory Hagan came several months before he worked at the Atlantic City-based organization. The outgoing president apologized to Hagan nonetheless, and said the comment does not reflect his values or those of the Miss America Organization.

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