Former NBC and Fox anchor Linda Vester say she suffered "years of humiliation and isolation" after being sexually harassed by powerful colleague Tom Brokaw in the 1990s. Vester tells Variety that when Brokaw was the host of NBC Nightly News, he made unwanted advances and tried to forcibly kiss her on two occasions, telling her he was looking "for an affair of more than passing affection." She says Brokaw, who is 30 years her senior, turned up uninvited at her hotel room in 1994, when she was 28, and at her residence in London the next year. Vester, a former war correspondent, says the behavior of her married colleague was "coercive and disgusting." This is the first time Brokaw has been publicly accused of sexual harassment.
Vester says she didn't report Brokaw's misconduct because there is a culture at NBC "where women who raise questions about misconduct get labeled as troublemakers" and she feared for her job, having just been hired full-time. Brokaw, who has been married to Meredith Auld since 1962, says he met with Vester twice at her request because she wanted career advice. "The meetings were brief, cordial, and appropriate, and despite Linda’s allegations, I made no romantic overtures towards her, at that time or any other," he said in a statement issued by NBC. The Washington Post reports that Brokaw also denies a second accusation of sexual harassment, from a woman who says he behaved inappropriately with her when she was a young production assistant at NBC in the mid-1990s. (Read more Tom Brokaw stories.)