Matt Lauer Fired From NBC News

The Today show announced on Wednesday, Nov. 29, 2017, that longtime anchor Matt Lauer had been terminated from NBC News following a "detailed complaint from a colleague about inappropriate sexual behavior in the workplace."

The news, which was announced at the top of the show by Savannah Guthrie and Hoda Kotb, was first revealed in a memo sent out to staffers by NBC News chairman Andy Lack.

"On Monday night, we received a detailed complaint from a colleague about inappropriate sexual behavior in the workplace by Matt Lauer," the memo read (via Twitter). "It represented, after serious review, a clear violation of our company's standards. As a result, we've decided to terminate his employment." 

The memo continued, "While it is the first complaint about his behavior in the over twenty years he's been at NBC News, we were also presented with reason to believe this may not have been an isolated incident. Our highest priority is to create a workplace environment where everyone feels safe and protected, and to ensure that any actions that run counter to our core values are met with consequences, no matter who the offender. We are deeply saddened by this turn of events, but we will face it together as a news organization — and do it in as transparent a manner as we can."

After reading the statement on the air, a tearful Guthrie added that the staff of Today had just learned of the news this morning and did not have more information beyond what was contained in the memo. The visibly shaken anchor also confessed to being "devastated" by the news. She also said she was "heartbroken," both for Lauer and the woman who came forward with the allegations.

Lauer joined the Today show in 1994 and has been the show's co-anchor since January 1997. His firing comes on the heels of multiple allegations of sexual harassment against some of Hollywood's most prominent male celebrities, including Harvey Weinstein, Kevin Spacey, and Charlie Rose

It also presents a major staffing dilemma for Today, which has been in the midst of a ratings war with other morning news programs like Good Morning America for decades and has struggled in recent years with messy behind-the-scenes drama. As of this writing, it is unclear whom NBC News will hire to permanently replace Lauer on Today and whether Kotb will continue to fill in for the time being.