Former top advisor to New York Gov. The New York Times reported that Kathy Hochul was the subject of sexual harassment allegations from women at a former workplace.
The Times reports that Adam Sullivan, the man who led Hochul's gubernatorial bid in 2022, resigned from his position as a political advisor to the governor on Sunday.
The Times reported on Wednesday that Sullivan was fired from a former position at Hub Project, a small Democratic advocacy organization, after colleagues complained of sexual harassment. Hochul claimed that she was unaware of the allegations against Sullivan before the Times reported them earlier this week.
Hochul told reporters after an unrelated incident in Manhattan, on Thursday, that sexual harassment was unacceptable under any circumstances.
She added, 'My staff told me they had been contacted by The New York Times and that an article would be published in a couple of hours. That's how I learned about the accusations and what women claim happened. I believe them.
CNN reached out to Sullivan but did not hear back. Sullivan responded to a series of questions from The Times with a single-line apology: 'I'm sorry to anyone who I may have made uncomfortable.'
A spokesperson for The Hub Project directed CNN to New Venture Fund. This umbrella organization'serves a fiscal sponsor, and handles all HR and Compliance matters'
New Venture Fund said to CNN on Thursday that its policy was to investigate allegations of impropriety by staff members in a timely, thorough and fair manner. The New Venture Fund added that 'New Venture Fund adhered to its policy and investigated the allegations promptly, terminating the employee.
Reports of subordinates being treated with disrespect, especially young women
Hochul stated that she met Sullivan for the first time when she ran as a candidate for Congress in 2011. He was recommended to her by Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. She said that because she had previously worked with Sullivan, she didn't do a thorough evaluation of his work prior to hiring him for her campaign as governor.
He was a manager in my campaign, so I knew him from that time. Then to think that I had to ask for his resume and go through a new process for campaigns I wasn't doing. Hochul said that if I had known what I knew now then, the situation would have been different.
Sullivan, who was based in Colorado at the time, had previously worked on Hochul's congressional campaign. He was then hired to manage Hochul's successful gubernatorial 2022 campaign.
Hochul, while serving as lieutenant-governor, took over the Governorship in 2021 when her predecessor, Gov. Andrew Cuomo resigned after an investigation by the state attorney general found that he had sexually harassed several women.
The Times reported on Sunday that Mr. Sullivan resigned in an email sent to his colleagues and apologized for his behavior, which included marginalizing and belittling his subordinates. He also said that he and Governor agreed that he would relinquish all his responsibilities 'for a foreseeable future'.
The Times reported that it had spoken to over 15 colleagues who claimed Sullivan had dissed subordinates - especially young women - frozen out aides disagreeing with him, and often shifted the blame to others if the campaign failed.
Hochul said to CNN on Sunday that he was disappointed with the New York Times article about Adam and he agreed with me that Adam should step aside.
Hochul signed a law in March 2022 'to combat workplace harassment and discrimination' The legislation was presented at a Women's History Month event with advocates of gender equality and women's right.
Hochul stated at the time that he had made it a priority to clean Albany, end the culture of abuse and harassment, and create safe and respectful workplaces.
She continued, "Everyone has a right to an environment free from unlawful discrimination and harassing, and I won't stop fighting for gender equality." There is still much to do, but I am proud of what we're doing to promote safety, respect, and dignity for all New Yorkers.