Eight women said North Carolina native and journalist Charlie Rose sexually harassed them, according to The Washington Post.
The longtime television host is accused of making unwanted sexual advances to eight women, including walking around naked in their presence, groping them and making lewd phone calls, the women told The Washington Post. Three of the women spoke on the record and five spoke to the Post on condition of anonymity, “out of fear of Rose’s stature in the industry, his power over their careers or what they described as his volatile temper.”
Rose was born in Henderson and is a graduate of Duke University where he earned bachelor’s in history and law degrees and met his wife, Mary King. The university on Monday declined to comment, said spokesman Keith Lawrence.
All eight women were employees or wanted to work for Rose, 75, on the “Charlie Rose” show that ran beginning in the late 1990s. Rose’s show airs on PBS. He also co-hosts “CBS This Morning” and contributes as a correspondent for “60 Minutes.” The allegations range throughout Rose’s career and fame.
Following The Washington Post report, CBS News suspended Rose on Monday and PBS suspended his program, according to multiple reports.
“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,” Rose said in a statement on Monday. “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. 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.
“I have learned a great deal as a result of these events, and I hope others will too. All of us, including me, are coming to a newer and deeper recognition of the pain caused by conduct in the past, and have come to a profound new respect for women and their lives.”
In a 2013 interview with The News & Observer about the reinvention of “CBS This Morning,” Rose joked about his role in the show:
“I'm just another pretty face,” he says, sparking more laughter. Of course, he's far more. A celebrated interviewer of, well, everyone, on his 22 years of “Charlie Rose” on PBS, he says his North Carolina upbringing has aided him.
“Regardless of what I've done with my life, the thing that has guided me is a great curiosity. I've grown up around folks with a great sense of language and storytelling. From Faulkner to my great friend at Duke, Reynolds Price, I've seen what you can do with language, how you can use it to inform and explain.”
Rose even joked that he’d like to be the next governor of North Carolina, and when it was suggested that he was perhaps tied in high esteem with North Carolina icon Charles Kuralt, but below Andy Griffith and Billy Graham, he said: “I'm gaining on Billy Graham.”
In a 1993 interview with The News & Observer, Rose was described “the perfect dinner guest” and discussed his romantic life.
Rose dines with the likes of Brooke Astor, Ralph Lauren and Jacqueline Onassis (well, they had a business lunch). His social life is constant fodder for New York gossip columnists, and it was no secret he dated Amanda Burden, daughter of legendary socialite Babe “You can never be too rich or too thin” Paley.
Interest in Rose's private life doesn't stop at the Big Apple limits. Newsday did a story called “The Love Cult of Charlie Rose,” about the women of America who had it bad for the talking head.
There's been scads of magazine articles. Esquire, W, and Vanity Fair have all profiled him, the latter in a not-too-flattering piece that hinted he might not be the best boyfriend in the world, the 1993 piece read. His relationship with Burden had him in the gossip columns daily.
This, too, would fall harder on shoulders less prepared, the 1993 piece reads. Rose shrugs off much of the bad press with grace.
“I don't know. I don't know. I don't really want to point something like that out because then people think you're obsessing over it and that's not true,” he says.
He is a man of great appetites, a man who loves life, the 1993 piece described Rose. His curiosity and pursuit of passions – from cerebral to sensual – are relentless.
In 2010, Rose delivered the commencement address at North Carolina State University.
Rose grew up an only child in Henderson, where his family owned a country store that he began working at when he was seven years old. He played basketball at Henderson High School and was supposedly once scouted by Frank McGuire, famed UNC coach.
In 1990, Rose bought a 525-acre farm in Oxford as a retreat. He also owns a house in Henderson, apartments in New York City, Washington, D.C. and Paris and a beach house in Bellport, N.Y.