Katie Couric opened up about the firing of her former Today co-host Matt Lauer at Dress for Success' annual Women Who Inspire event this week. During the conversation, Couric spoke about the #MeToo movement and the circumstances surrounding Lauer's departure from Today in 2017.
"As you can imagine, I’ve thought a lot about this over the last two years because it has been, to use the phrase that many have used, a reckoning," Couric said, according to Variety. "It’s been painful for me on many levels, especially when it comes to understanding what was going on with Matt, who I think ultimately turned out to be two very different people, in terms of my relationship with him versus some of the other things that were going on."
Couric worked alongside Lauer for 15 years before leaving to host CBS Evening News. Her comments about Lauer comes close to a month after the broadcaster was accused of raping NBC news co-worker Brooke Nevils. In the book Catch and Kill: Lies, Spies, and a Conspiracy to Protect Predators, Nevils claimed that Lauer had sex with her in her hotel room at the 2014 Winter Olympics but she was "too drunk to consent." Lauer published an open letter responded to claims of his misconduct by saying he engaged in "extramarital, but consensual" relationships with women.
Due to allegations against Lauer, Couric decided to offer her advice on what she thinks would prevent similar actions from happening in the future.
"We need many more women in leadership positions in journalism and broadcast news," Couric said. "Things don’t really change unless you have a woman with real authority and decision-making opportunities, and I really do believe that the atmosphere of a company and the standards, they all come from the top."