Monday, September 26, 2022

Tavis Smiley Responds to PBS’ Sexual Abuse Allegations & Looks Forward to Court Date of Feb 10

*Tavis Smiley is back in the news because a new report from a PBS-hired external investigator has been unsealed. It’s NOT good news for Smiley.

In a nutshell, the report says Smiley’s alleged misconduct dates back decades and spans inappropriate sexual comments and touching, verbal abuse, as well as sexual relationships with subordinates and guests on his show.

Smiley also issued a response to the allegations which you can read further below.


Speaking of the allegations, immediately below are some of them as highlighted in the PBS report:

  • An anonymous female employee said Smiley texted her wanting to “hook up.” The woman declined the invitation and said she just wanted to do her job. Smiley is said to have responded that he could fire her before the weekend, then rehire her on Monday so they could hook up on the weekend when she was not employed.
  • A woman who worked with Smiley in 2000 claimed he “grabbed (her) buttocks” during a photo session. The woman additionally alleged that Smiley brushed up against her with his penis, then pretended it as an accident. Later, she asked for a letter of reference at the end of her internship, but Smiley said no unless she came to his house at 11 p.m. She said she declined.
  • Around 2002, another woman said she was lying on the floor, on her back, fixing wires in Smiley’s studio. The talk show host allegedly told her “this is the way I would like to see you more often.”
  • A male employee claimed he heard Smiley say he was a “titty man.”
  • Smiley is alleged to have told a female producer “wow you got big ole titties for a producer of public radio.”
  • Several women interviewed for the report claimed they had consensual relationships with Smiley, but said that the power dynamic made the situations uncomfortable.
  • One woman claimed that when she visited Smiley’s house, he opened the door and was not wearing pants. He later asked her to have a threesome with him and his executive producer, who, the report claimed, was seen naked in Smiley’s bed.

Related: Tavis Smiley Loses Bid to Throw Out PBS Lawsuit

Smiley, of course, has denied all the allegations in the report. He added that he never said “anything generally misogynistic about women.” He also said he never disciplined or terminated an employee for knowing too much about his sexual relationships or for having sex with him.

You can find out what else Tavis Smiley had to say at Variety.

EUR Bonus Coverage … Smiley has also released the statement below via his publicist, saying that he’s looking forward to his day in court to face the charges against him …




  1. Based on what I read, it’s not a report, but a 472-page submission by Tavis Smiley’s attorneys that should not have been on the public docket for viewing because of A Protective Order that should have been Filed Under Seal for some of the witnesses that had concerns. It has since been removed from the Washington, D.C. Superior Court’s website. BUT, THE DAMAGE HAS BEEN DONE FOR THOSE WITNESSES THAT WANTED TO BE PROTECTED BECAUSE PEOPLE HAVE DOWNLOADED THE INFORMATION. Tavis Smiley could win this based on Sue Ann Van Dermyden’s rebuttal of Sarah Wirtz’s investigation for PBS, along with other information, including what some witnesses said who continued to work for Smiley despite his alleged behavior (few were later laid-off or terminated). This really is a “He said, She said” thing because there is not enough proof or evidence.

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