L.A. Reid, the chairman and CEO of Epic Records who last week was removed from his post for undisclosed reasons, is reportedly being accused of sexual harassment by a former assistant.
A source told the New York Post that in March, the woman’s lawyer sent a letter to Sony Music General Counsel Julie Swidler, which claimed Reid made unwanted sexual advances towards her at a holiday party, asked her to sleep in his bed during a work trip, and referred to her looks and outfits in an inappropriate way. It is unclear whether Reid’s removal from Epic was voluntary or if it was related to these reported accusations, but the Post quotes a source who says Sony’s new CEO, who assumed his role in October and oversees Epic, is intolerant of “a culture like that”:
Sony Music CEO Rob Stringer, who took over the top spot at the company last month, appears to have taken decisive action in the first major crisis to come along.
“We are not allowing a culture like that in this company,” one insider familiar with Reid’s ouster told The Post, “no matter how much a person brings to the bottom line.”
Reid had been with Epic for three years, developing such acts as Meghan Trainor and DJ Khaled, while also appearing as a judge on X-Factor. Before that, as head of LaFace, Arista and Island Def Jam, he was instrumental in developing the careers of such acts as TLC, Mariah Carey, Rihanna, Kanye West and more in his capacity. The Post contacted representation for both Sony and Reid, all of whom had no comment.
Sony CEO Rob Stringer’s arrival was met with the usual speculation about what changes he might make in the corporation, but so far Reid’s exit stands out above anything else he’s done. While it’s encouraging to hear Sony reportedly plans to crack down on its climate of sexual harassment, as of press time, Dr. Luke, who has been embroiled in sexual assault accusations for over a year, was still with the company.