Debra Lee Rumored To Be Next To Get A Pink Slip From Viacom
According to Page Six reports, Viacom is restructuring and Debra Lee may be the next BET exec to get ousted:
“Viacom has a plan to phase her out after the BET Awards [on June 25]. She was planning to leave the network in November if Hillary Clinton had won the election,” the source said, adding that Lee had expected a position with the Clinton administration.
Lee sent out a memo on Tuesday informing staff that the network is closing its DC headquarters after 37 years.
The media heavyweight further added fuel to rumors when she moved to LA and listed her DC pad on the market for $13.5 million.
But an insider at Viacom told us that Lee’s not leaving, and the company’s simply in transition. “Debi is not leaving. Her contract was recently extended, and Viacom is not restructuring BET. Closing the DC office is a part of a transition that’s been occurring for a long time. Everyone understands the move. They’re not surprising anyone,” the source said.
A rep for BET told us the network doesn’t comment on “rumors and personnel matters.”
Hmmmmm…. Interesting. Meanwhile BET is facing a discrimination lawsuit that Zola Mashiriki (the head of original programming who was fired along with Stephen Hill while on sick leave to battle breast cancer) filed against the network and Hill. Her claim alleges:
“The company fosters a good old boys’ club atmosphere and mentality that are hostile to women and their advancement. This misogynistic culture, which marginalizes, demeans and undervalues women, begins at the top of the corporate structure,” she claims in the suit.
Yikes… Sounds like a mess. We would say poor Stephen Hill, but we’re pretty sure that guy was stacking his chips the whole time he was on fat cat status at BET.