Gretchen Carlson and former Miss Americas push for pageant CEO to resign

Gretchen Carlson and former Miss Americas push for pageant CEO to resign
© Greg Nash

Gretchen Carlson and two other former Miss Americas are calling on the pageant's CEO and other organizers to step down after leaked emails revealed that they made disparaging and inappropriate comments about former pageant winners.

Carlson, Mallory Hagan and Kate Shindle, all former Miss Americas, called in tweets on Thursday for pageant CEO Sam Haskell to resign after The Huffington Post published emails between Haskell, board members and a writer for the pageant that referred to former Miss Americas in vulgar terms.

Carlson, Hagan and Shindle were all mentioned in the leaked emails. 

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“As a proud former Miss America and former member of the Board of the Miss America Organization, I am shocked and deeply saddened by the disgusting statements about women attributed to the leadership of the MAO. No woman should be demeaned with such vulgar slurs," Carlson wrote on Twitter, punctuating the message with "#ResignNow."

"If he is saying this about us...what's he saying about others?" Hagan tweeted, using the hashtag "#firesamhaskell."

In a lengthy statement posted on Twitter, Shindle said that Haskell and Miss America's board of directors should all resign in order to right the pageant's course.

"I still believe that Miss America has relevance and purpose in 2017 and beyond," she said. "But in order to achieve that purpose, the entire Board of Directors must immediately resign, including and especially Sam Haskell. Only then can the women of Miss America reclaim its rich history and catalyze what is a clearly necessary evolution."

Dick Clark Productions, which produces the annual pageant, severed ties with the organization after the emails were published.

The Miss America Organization said Thursday that Haskell apologized for the messages, saying that it "considers the matter closed," according to CBS News