Time’s Up CEO Tina Tchen resigns in wake of Cuomo scandal

NEW YORK – The chief executive of the sexual harassment victims’ advocacy group Time’s Up resigned Thursday amid outrage about revelations that its leaders advised previous New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s administration soon after he was initial accused of misconduct previous calendar year.

Time’s Up CEO and president Tina Tchen claimed in a assertion that she’s “spent a job combating for optimistic modify for women” but was no lengthier the right particular person to guide the #MeToo-era organization.

“I am specifically conscious that my posture at the helm of TIME’S UP has develop into a painful and divisive focal stage, in which those people incredibly females and other activists who should really be functioning together to struggle for modify are instead battling every single other in dangerous means,” she wrote.

The group’s chief functioning officer, Monifa Bandele, will provide as interim CEO.

Tchen’s resignation comes following the Aug. 9 departure of the organization’s chair, Roberta Kaplan. Both ladies experienced been the focus on of ire from Time’s Up supporters around the strategy they experienced supplied any assistance to Cuomo, who resigned Monday, a few months following an investigation overseen by New York’s attorney common concluded he sexually harassed at the very least 11 women.

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The report in-depth Cuomo’s endeavor to discredit his initial community accuser, Lindsey Boylan, right after she accused him last December of generating inappropriate reviews, but in advance of she explicitly thorough allegations of unwanted touching and kissing.

Text messages attained by The Washington Submit demonstrate that Tchen initially discouraged other Time’s Up leaders from making any community remark about Boylan’s allegations. Later on, top Cuomo aide Melissa DeRosa questioned Kaplan — her legal professional — to overview a letter the governor’s supporters supposed to circulate attacking Boylan’s credibility.

“Ms. Kaplan browse the letter to the head of the advocacy group Times Up, and both equally of them allegedly instructed that, without having the statements about Ms. Boylan’s interactions with male colleagues, the letter was wonderful,” the report stated, with no explicitly naming Tchen.

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The letter was in the end in no way unveiled.

Afterwards, following Boylan expanded on her allegations in opposition to Cuomo, T ime’s Up named for an investigation.

Boylan pointed out Thursday that Tchen’s resignation statement didn’t contain an apology.

“It’s unfortunate that @TinaTchen nonetheless can not just take obligation for the damage she’s caused,” Boylan tweeted. That sentiment was echoed by a further Cuomo accuser, Charlotte Bennett.

“Instead of featuring a honest apology to the survivors, activists and allies she’s harmed, @TinaTchen goes out the very same way our previous Governor did — listing her accomplishments, pointing the finger at other people, and making an attempt to justify her inexcusable conduct. Good riddance.”

Tchen declined further comment.

Time’s Up received its get started in January 2018 amid outrage around sexual misconduct by the film producer Harvey Weinstein. Far more than 300 gals in leisure — from television powerhouse Shonda Rhimes to actresses Reese Witherspoon and Eva Longoria — signed an open up letter that proven them as founders.

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Its large-profile debut ongoing with that month’s Golden Globes, in which attendees donned black and sported Time’s Up pins to simply call attention to the movement for gender equality.

Tchen previously served as an assistant to then-President Barack Obama, main of team to then-initially lady Michelle Obama and executive director of the White Dwelling Council on Women of all ages and Girls. She co-established the Time’s Up Authorized Defense Fund in 2017, together with Kaplan and two other gals. The fund was recognized to aid everyday survivors with legal expenses, and experienced elevated practically $22 million considerably less than a 12 months just after its founding.

In a statement Thursday, the Time’s Up board praised Tchen’s tenure, declaring she “has built a variance in the lives of so numerous and we are grateful for her hard work and effect.” But accepting her resignation was a measure of accountability, the board reported.

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This isn’t really the first time the advocacy group has been roiled by leadership challenges. Tchen took the helm in 2019, following previous WNBA president Lisa Borders stepped down as president and CEO next sexual misconduct allegations from her very own son.

Tarana Burke, the founder of #MeToo and a member of Time’s Up’s prolonged board, made available her standpoint on the troubled waters previously this week to The Involved Press. She described Time’s Up as a youthful business with great intentions that’s now grappling with how to wield electricity.

“I consider they have to do a whole lot of soul hunting and at the finish of the working day,” she claimed. “It might arrive out the other stop to be that they have to figure out how to function in different ways, that they have to relinquish some of the power and they have to sacrifice some of the wins in buy to do the operate effectively, in the way that people today have faith in.”

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Connected Push reporter Jocelyn Noveck contributed to this report.

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