Award given to Charlie Rose at KU might be rescinded following sexual misconduct allegations

In this Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2016, file photo, Charlie Rose participates in the CBS

As esteemed journalist Charlie Rose joins a growing list of media personalities accused of sexual misconduct, questions have arisen about whether an award given to him at the University of Kansas will be rescinded.

In a statement provided to the Journal-World on Tuesday, KU journalism dean Ann Brill said she had heard from “several trustees of the William Allen White Foundation who want to rescind the National Citation that the Foundation gave Rose earlier this year.”

A spokeswoman for KU’s School of Journalism said later Tuesday that a ballot had been sent to each of the members of the White Foundation Board of Trustees to decide the matter. The board’s decision is expected to be released on Monday.

“The allegations against Charlie Rose are beyond disturbing,” Brill said. “I admire the women who have the courage to speak out and say, ‘No more.’ We have to make it safe for everyone to do their jobs.”

Rose was fired from his job at CBS Tuesday following allegations in a Washington Post story Monday that he made lewd and unwanted advances, including nudity and groping, to at least eight women, many of whom worked with him on his popular PBS interview show, “Charlie Rose.”

Rose, 75, who co-hosted “CBS This Morning,” apologized for his “inappropriate behavior,” while denying the accuracy of some of the allegations. In a statement posted on Twitter, he said:

“In my 45 years in journalism, I have prided myself on being an advocate for the careers of the women with whom I have worked. Nevertheless, in the past few days, claims have been made about my behavior toward some former female colleagues.”

“It is essential that these women know I hear them and that I deeply apologize for my inappropriate behavior,” the statement continued. “I am greatly embarrassed. I have behaved insensitively at times, and I accept responsibility for that, though I do not believe that all of these allegations are accurate. I always felt that I was pursuing shared feelings, even though I now realize I was mistaken.”

Doug Anstaett, executive director of the Kansas Press Association, told the Journal-World that he was among the William Allen White Foundation trustees who thought Rose’s award should be rescinded.

“The National Citation is a coveted award among our nation’s journalists, and its recipients must be held to the highest standards of professional conduct,” Anstaett said in an email. “Unfortunately, we now know Charlie Rose failed to meet those standards.”

The William Allen White Citation is an annual award given at KU to an American journalist who exemplifies the ideals of service, professionalism and community embodied by renowned Kansas newspaperman William Allen White, according to the White Foundation’s website.

Previous winners have included Bob Woodward, Leonard Pitts, Gwen Ifill, Candy Crowley, Bob Dotson and many others.

Last April, journalist Bob Schieffer accepted the award on behalf of Rose, who could not travel to Lawrence because of health reasons.

Schieffer said in his speech that the White Foundation “couldn’t have made a better choice.”

Other media personalities accused of sexual misconduct recently have included star New York Times reporter Glenn Thrush, NBC analyst Mark Halperin, NPR news chief Michael Oreskes, Fox News host Eric Bolling, Fox host Bill O’Reilly and Fox CEO Roger Ailes, among others.

Brian Bracco, chairman of the William Allen White Foundation, could not be immediately reached for comment Tuesday.